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Google pledges $6.5 million to fight misinformation online

As information about the novel coronavirus swells online, Google is upping its funding of fact-checkers and anti-misinformation nonprofits.

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Google Doodle honoring handwashing pioneer Dr. Ignaz Semmelweis

On March 20, Google's Doodle honored handwashing pioneer Dr. Ignaz Semmelweis with an animation showing the proper way to wash your hands to prevent the spread of germs.

For the most up-to-date news and information about the coronavirus pandemic, visit the WHO website.

Google on Thursday said it plans to donate $6.5 million to fighting misinformation online. The funds, which will go to fact-checkers and to nonprofits fighting misinformation, will have a primary focus on responding to the coronavirus crisis.

The move comes as concerns over COVID-19 online misinformation rise. Tech giants like Google, Facebook and Amazon have faced criticism of their handling of misinformation, though they've also worked to distribute information from more reputable sources through notifications and voice assistants.

"We're also making more local Google Trends data available for journalists, health organizations and local authorities," said Google's statement, "to help them understand people's information needs around the world."

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