Meta Planning to Close CrowdTangle Tool: It is reported that the main company, Meta, is planning to shut down the ‘CrowdTangle’ tool that researchers use to gather information about posts that have gone viral on Facebook. Researchers value CrowdTangle as a data tracking tool. Researchers use the tool to track the spread of fake information, starting with viral posts.
According to Bloomberg, Meta plans to shut down the tool completely; The process has already begun.
At various times, researchers have relied on data from CrowdTangle to challenge the official statement of the Meta.
Based on information from CrowdTangle, author and columnist Kevin Ross said that users are more likely to respond to Facebook posts by right-wing news sources. The official statement of Facebook in this regard was completely different.
In a report published in the New York Times in July last year, Kevin Ross said there was an “internal data war” in Meta with information from CrowdTangle. He said there was a difference of opinion among the top officials of the Meta as to which of the data obtained from the data tracking tool would be made available to the public or researchers.
CrowdTangle founder and CEO Brandon Silverman was in favor of data sharing, according to technology site Verge. Silverman left Meta in October 2021.
Simply put, CrowdTangle is a data tracking tool owned by Facebook, through which journalists, researchers, and data verifiers have the opportunity to gather, analyze, and report on topics that are at the top of the discussion on the platform.
However, CrowdTangle does not collect data from the user’s personal profile. Rather, it gathers information about likes, shares, views, comments, and reactions to posts on a specific topic from across the platform.
John Higman, the head of Facebook’s news feed division, tried to disprove his observation in a Twitter thread after Kevin Ross spoke about Meta’s internal ‘data war’ with Crowdtangle.
Russia made a list of the top ten right-wing news sources based on information from Crowdtangle. Higgins said that although Russia’s engagement data was accurate, the list “does not accurately represent what most people see on Facebook.”
Instead, Higgins claimed that only the data that reaches the most users can be accurately reviewed. But Facebook does not publish that data quickly.
Facebook bought CrowdTangle in 2016. When purchasing the data tracking tool, the company said the tool would help publishers “bring stories that are really important to the public, measure readers and viewers’ reactions, and identify the real influencers.”
Crowdtangle also collects information about the promotion and response to Facebook posts from Instagram and Twitter outside of Facebook. Voters’ rights group Common Cause used the tool to identify posts that were “spreading false information quickly,” Bloomberg reported.
The media wrote that Meta started closing the CrowdTangle in February. However, the company suspended the process midway for fear of harm under the European Union’s Digital Services Act. Now the process of closing the CrowdTangle has started in full swing again.
But the tool will run until the US midterm elections, a Meta spokesman told Bloomberg. In addition, he claims that there are plans to give Facebook researchers a ‘more valuable tool.