Facebook reveals its internal rules for removing controversial posts


The damage control is ongoing for Facebook, and as part of the effort, its VP of global product management Monika Bickert shared some details on the company's internal enforcement guidelines for what content is and is not allowed. They're created to be comprehensive - content that might not be considered hate speech may still be removed for breaching our Bullying Policies.

Ultimately, Facebook wants to be seen as being more transparent over its often inconsistent content takedowns, but in all likelihood this will do very little to spare the company from its critics.

Facebook has long tried to explain what is and isn't allowed on its platform through publicly available community standards, but the company today published what it said is its internal guidelines on how it enforces its own rules.

"We have people in 11 offices around the world, including subject matter experts on issues such as hate speech, child safety and terrorism. Second, providing these details makes it easier for everyone, including experts in different fields, to give us feedback so that we can improve the guidelines-and the decisions we make-over time", Bickert said. I worked on everything from child safety to counter terrorism during my years as a criminal prosecutor, and other team members include a former rape crisis counsellor, an academic who has spent her career studying hate organizations, a human rights lawyer, and a teacher.

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Based on this feedback, as well as changes in social norms and language, our standards evolve over time.

In an exclusive interview with Sky News, one of Facebook's top executives has admitted the company's enforcement of policy violations is not ideal but insists the company has the interests of its users at heart.

To support its new detailed community standards, Facebook will also be launching a series of events around the world, including in the U.S., U.K., Germany, France, India, and Singapore, where it will solicit feedback from users on the ground. Technology can help here. "We restrict the display of nudity or sexual activity because some people in our community may be sensitive to this type of content", although the policy notes that an exemption may apply if "it is posted for educational, humorous or satirical purposes". The Community Operations team, which reviews the reports, works 24/7 in over 40 languages.

For example, you can't post addresses or images of safe houses, or explicitly expose undercover law enforcement.

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San Francisco: Facebook Inc said on Monday that it removed or put a warning label on 1.9 million pieces of extremist content related to ISIS or al-Qaeda in the first three months of the year, or about double the amount from the previous quarter.

If your photo, video or post has been removed because it violates our Community Standards, you will be notified, and given the option to request additional review.

Facebook promises that a person will review the post within 24 hours to assess whether its algorithms have missed the mark.

Nevertheless, it's not enough eyeballs looking at content, and Facebook is prone to making mistakes. "We believe giving people a voice in the process is another essential component of building a fair system".

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Facebook, the world's largest social network, has become a dominant source of information in many countries around the world.

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