Facebook appears to have a bug in its News Feed spam filter, causing URLs to legitimate websites including Medium, Buzzfeed, and USA Today to be blocked from being shared as posts or comments. The issue is blocking shares of some coronavirus-related content, while some unrelated links are allowed through, though it’s not clear what exactly is or isn’t tripping the filter. Facebook has been trying to fight back against misinformation related to the outbreak, but may have gotten overzealous or experienced a technical error. We’ve reached out to Facebook for comment.
Upon sharing, users are seeing a warning from Facebook stating “Your post goes against our Community Standards on spam”. It goes on to explain that “No one else can see your post. We have these standards to prevent things like false advertising, fraud and security breaches.”
Earlier this month, Facebook banned ads for protective face masks in an effort to prevent price gouging during the outbreak. Facebook has also been sharing contagion prevention tips atop Instagram’s home screen, sending misinformation to fact-checkers for review, and providing data to researchers.