Facebook’s experimental predictions app is now open to all users in US, Canada
Facebook thinks that its predictions app Forecast will encourage measured and respectful conversation.
All misinformation and false news on the platform aside, Facebook has an experimental predictions app called Forecast. As Facebook describes it, Forecast is a community for crowdsourced predictions and collective insights. The app will let users ask questions and predict the outcomes.
Rolling out to all users now, the app will allow you to browse popular topics and let users make and share their own predictions. Forecasts will be trackable over time, says Endgadget can be shared on other platforms.
“As we've learned in our initial testing, when people take time to explain how they arrived at their forecasts, it appears to encourage measured, respectful conversation,” Facebook wrote in a statement.
1/7: Today, we're launching Forecast, a community for crowdsourced predictions, starting with a focus #COVID19 and its impact on the world. Read on or join the waitlist here: https://t.co/hL8XmQ4gXO pic.twitter.com/mF83QFVgfa— Forecast (@ForecastByNPE) June 23, 2020
Given that Facebook as a platform is “riddled with misinformation”, there's ample reason to be sceptical. And it also does not help that the predictions actually boil down to a binary choice. And there's “speculation that the predictions could reinforce existing beliefs or influence real-world outcomes”.
Facebook had launched a beta version of Forecast in June, so it has undergone a bit of testing. The app says that all content must abide by its moderation guidelines, which means that all questions will need to be approved before they are published. But it remains to be seen if these safeguards remain effective over time.
“We believe that a community built around predictions is not only a good way to surface crowdsourced wisdom, but may also help to encourage healthier online conversations across a broad range of topics,” Forecast wrote on Twitter.
People in the US and Canada can visit the Forecast website from now and Forecast is also available as an iOS app.