Microsoft Adds NewsGuard to Edge Browser for iOS to Warn Users of Untrustworthy Sites

Wednesday January 23, 2019 2:35 AM PST by Tim Hardwick

Going forward, regular users of Microsoft's Edge mobile browser for iOS can opt to receive warnings when they visit untrustworthy news sites.


The company's browser is integrating NewsGuard, a green-red rating system founded by journalists Steven Brill and Gordon Crovitz that evaluates websites using a set of criteria, including the use of deceptive headlines, fake news history, and financial and ownership transparency.

NewsGuard also provides "Nutrition Label" write-ups of more than 2,000 news and information sites that account for 96 percent of online engagement in the U.S. in English.

NewsGuard has existed for some time as an optional privacy extension for Safari, Chrome, Firefox and Edge desktop browsers, but Microsoft's decision to integrate it into its mobile browser as an optional setting signals a growing concern for preventing users' exposure to purveyors of false or misleading news or disinformation online. A Microsoft spokesperson said:

"Microsoft is partnering with NewsGuard to offer the NewsGuard browser extension on Microsoft Edge, and a feature in Microsoft Edge mobile apps for iOS and Android to help our customers evaluate news sources. Across both the browser and the apps, NewsGuard is optional and customers need to take action if they want to use the feature."

As an example of NewsGuard's yardstick for untrustworthiness, The Guardian reports the Edge mobile is now warning users that the Daily Mail's website, Mail Online, "generally fails to maintain basic standards of accuracy and accountability" and "has been forced to pay damages in numerous high-profile cases." Visitors to Russia's state-sponsored RT News website receive a similar warning.

Responding to NewsGuard's warning, a Daily Mail spokesperson provided MacRumors with the following statement:

"We have only very recently become aware of the NewsGuard start-up and are in discussions with them to have this egregiously erroneous classification resolved as soon as possible."

NewsGuard's Steven Brill told The Guardian it takes full responsibility for its ratings. "They can blame us. And we're happy to be blamed," he said. "Unlike the platforms we're happy to be accountable. We want people to game our system. We are totally transparent. We are not an algorithm."

(Via The Verge.)

Top Rated Comments

(View all)
Avatar
16 months ago
This is good for the three people who will use Edge. ;-)
Score: 11 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
16 months ago
Newsguard is not objective - it is rated by humans and seems like most humans have a LOT of bias these days.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
16 months ago

Also good for those of us who read the article and are installing the extension. ;)

Edit: Never mind. They gave Faux News a green light, so they apparently don't actually do their stated purpose of warning you of untrustworthy sites. #uninstalled

*sigh*

Yeah. Any attempt at this kind of plugin is utterly pointless, because people are only looking for something that confirms what they already believe. Absolutely no point in it.

I'm not saying Fox is trustworthy, but that you have an immediate knee jerk reaction like that to anything it says means that it's hopeless. Not you. Humanity. Our brains just aren't wired to handle things we disagree with. It's amazing. Social media has to have the ability to block people - people just can't deal with the possibility that there are differing opinions.

It's shocking that Democracy or civilization works at all with such tribalism.
Score: 5 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
16 months ago
This won’t fix the problem. People choose what to believe or not based on their preconceived world view.

If they don’t like the content of an article and NewsGuard labels it as fraud, people will cite NewsGuard as why not to trust it.

If they do like the article, they’ll ignore NewsGuard calling it flawed, or be angry at NewsGuard, calling it biased.

Don’t like an article but NewsGuard says it’s true? NewsGuard is wrong.
Score: 4 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
16 months ago

Amusing to see that it did actually blacklist the Daily Mail, one of the UK's most popular tabloid newspapers.

It’s f***ing hilarious!

"[The Daily Mail] generally fails to maintain basic standards of accuracy and accountability”

Never a truer word spoken.

About time that filthy journalistic embarrassment got blocked!

It’s just a shame it’s only the website, and not the “newspaper” itself.
Score: 3 Votes (Like | Disagree)
Avatar
16 months ago
Amusing to see that it did actually blacklist the Daily Mail, one of the UK's most popular tabloid newspapers.
Score: 2 Votes (Like | Disagree)

Top Stories

Apple Acquires Weather App Dark Sky

Tuesday March 31, 2020 10:22 am PDT by Juli Clover
Apple has acquired weather app Dark Sky, Dark Sky's developers announced today. Dark Sky is one of the most popular weather apps on the App Store, known for its accuracy and storm warnings. Our goal has always been to provide the world with the best weather information possible, to help as many people as we can stay dry and safe, and to do so in a way that respects your privacy. There is no ...

Zoom Accused of Misleading Users With 'End-to-End Encryption' Claims Amid Other Security Issues [Updated]

Wednesday April 1, 2020 2:47 am PDT by Tim Hardwick
Zoom is facing fresh scrutiny today following a report that the videoconferencing app's encryption claims are misleading. Zoom states on its website and in its security white paper that the app supports end-to-end encryption, a term that refers to a way of protecting user content so that the company has no access to it whatsoever. However, an investigation by The Intercept reveals that...

Case for Upcoming Low-Cost iPhone Shows Up at Best Buy With Alleged April 5 Stock Date

Monday March 30, 2020 4:25 pm PDT by Juli Clover
Apple has a new low-cost iPhone in the works, which is supposed to be launching sometime in the first half of 2020. Given the ongoing situation in the United States and other countries, it's been unclear if the device is going to launch within the planned timeline, but there are signs that it could be coming soon. We started seeing cases for the new low-cost iPhone back in early February,...

Bloomberg: Apple's 5G iPhone Still on Schedule for Fall Launch, But Future Products Could Be Delayed

Monday March 30, 2020 2:40 am PDT by Tim Hardwick
Apple's 5G iPhone is still on track to launch within the company's typical annual fall release schedule, according to a new Bloomberg report on filed on Monday. Signs are that Apple's Chinese-centric manufacturing -- of which Hon Hai is the linchpin -- is slowly getting back on track. The next iPhones with 5G wireless capabilities remain on schedule to launch in the fall, partly because mass...

Testing Brydge's New Pro+ Keyboard With Trackpad for iPad Pro

Monday March 30, 2020 2:04 pm PDT by Juli Clover
Well ahead of when Apple introduced trackpad support in iOS 13.4, Brydge announced an iPad Pro keyboard with a built-in multi-touch trackpad. We have one of Brydge's new Pro+ keyboards on hand, and thought we'd check it out to see how it works with Apple's new 2020 iPad Pro models. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. The Brydge Pro+ keyboard is similar in design to...

Apple's Work on New Upcoming Products Progressing Normally as Employees Adjust to Telecommuting

Monday March 30, 2020 11:58 am PDT by Juli Clover
Apple's development of upcoming products is progressing as usual despite the fact that Apple employees around the world are working from home, according to a new report today out from Bloomberg. Apple is still working on new versions of the HomePod, Apple TV, MacBook Pro, budget iPads, Apple Watch, iPhone, and iMac, all of which could be released "as early as later this year" and have been...

Apple Releases ProRes RAW Beta for Windows

Monday March 30, 2020 9:33 am PDT by Juli Clover
Apple today released ProRes RAW for Windows in a beta capacity (via Mark Gurman), with the software designed to allow ProRes RAW and ProRes RAW HQ video files to be watched in compatible applications on Windows machines. According to Apple, the software will let the files be played within several Adobe apps: Adobe After Effects (Beta) Adobe Media Encocder (Beta) Adobe Premiere...

Apple Configurator 2 Updated With New Features, Including Support for Restoring Firmware on 2019 Mac Pro

Tuesday March 31, 2020 5:34 am PDT by Joe Rossignol
Apple Configurator 2 has been updated to version 2.12 with several improvements, including support for restoring firmware on the 2019 Mac Pro. The release notes:• Added support for restoring firmware on the 2019 Mac Pro • Allow access to websites using TLS 1.0 and 1.1 • VPN: Configure Provider Designated Requirement for Custom SSL connection type • VPN: Configure network options for ...

Seemingly Unreleased Version of Logic Pro X With Live Loops Appears on Apple's Education Site [Updated]

Sunday March 29, 2020 7:23 am PDT by Hartley Charlton
Update: Apple has replaced the Logic Pro X image with an older version. Original story follows. A seemingly unreleased version of Logic Pro X has appeared on Apple's education site, as spotted by a Reddit user. The image from Apple's education products page shows a 16-inch MacBook Pro running Logic Pro X, but with a familiar interface that looks extremely similar to GarageBand's Live Loops ...

Apple's 2020 MacBook Air vs. 2020 iPad Pro

Wednesday April 1, 2020 2:45 pm PDT by Juli Clover
Apple in March updated both the MacBook Air and the iPad Pro, and with the iPad Pro increasingly positioned as a computer replacement, we thought we'd compare both new machines to see how they measure up and which one might be a better buy depending on user needs. Subscribe to the MacRumors YouTube channel for more videos. We're comparing the base model 12.9-inch iPad Pro and the base model...