Tag Archives: Facebook

Facebook Intensifies Censorship of User Content

“Hate Speech” Difficult to Police

Social media behemoth Facebook, with over two billion users worldwide, has issued a censorship report for the first quarter of 2018. The document states that its recently-deployed artificial intelligence censor-bots flag or eliminate over 85% of images posted containing “graphic violence.”

The same techniques have been successful in addressing 1.9 million in the same period posts promoting “terrorist propaganda,” the company said.

Facebook’s automated censors have much greater difficulty detecting “racist or homophobic hate speech,” because it “racist is often quoted on posts by their targets or activists,” AFP reports.

“It may take a human to understand and accurately interpret nuances like… self-referential comments or sarcasm,” the report said, noting that Facebook aims to “protect and respect both expression and personal safety”.

Facebook took action against 2.5 million pieces of hate speech content during the period, a 56 increase over October-December. But only 38 percent had been detected through Facebook’s efforts — the rest flagged up by users.

The posts that keep the Facebook reviewers the busiest are those showing adult nudity or sexual activity — quite apart from child pornography, which is not covered by the report.

Some 21 million such posts were handled in the period, a similar number to October-December 2017.

That was less than 0.1 percent of viewed content — which includes text, images, videos, links, live videos or comments on posts — Facebook said, adding it had dealt with nearly 96 percent of the cases before being alerted to them.

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Facebook’s Begins “Ranking” News Orgs on “Trustworthiness”

Announcement Made as Zuckerberg Hob-Nobs “Off the Record” with Major News Media Execs

Facebook is the foremost platform where individual users alongside mainstream and alternative news media share news and perspectives. Now the links shared on Facebook will be promoted or suppressed based on what the social media giant calculates as their “trustworthiness” or lack thereof. The new program is costing “billions” of dollars, which is being spent on both artificial intelligence and “tens of thousands of human moderators.” Facebook’s efforts are allegedly intended to combat “fake news” and “deliberate propaganda, especially in elections.”

Buzfeed reports:

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg said Tuesday that the company has already begun to implement a system that ranks news organizations based on trustworthiness, and promotes or suppresses its content based on that metric.

Zuckerberg said the company has gathered data on how consumers perceive news brands by asking them to identify whether they have heard of various publications and if they trust them.

“We put [that data] into the system, and it is acting as a boost or a suppression, and we’re going to dial up the intensity of that over time,” he said. “We feel like we have a responsibility to further [break] down polarization and find common ground.”

Zuckerberg met with a group of news media executives at the Rosewood Sand Hill hotel in Menlo Park after delivering his keynote speech at Facebook’s annual F8 developer conference Tuesday.

The meeting included representatives from BuzzFeed News, the Information, Quartz, the New York Times, CNN, the Wall Street Journal, NBC, Recode, Univision, Barron’s, the Daily Beast, the Economist, HuffPost, Insider, the Atlantic, the New York Post, and others.

The event, called “OTR” (shorthand for “off the record”), is an annual gathering meant for new media news executives to talk shop. It is in its second year. Zuckerberg’s remarks were initially meant to be, like the name of the conference, off the record, but he agreed to answer questions on the record.

Even if it does not continue to overtly sideline conservative content, Facebook’s AI-guided censorship squad faces an uphill battle with an American public that is deeply divided along political lines, and 54% of whom believe Facebook and Twitter are part of the problem, according to a recent Gallup/Knight Foundation study.

Politico summarizes the paper’s findings thus,

Americans have a negative view of the media, believe coverage is more biased than ever and are sharply divided in their views along partisan lines.

The study’s sponsors and academic observers fault conservatives and supporters of President Trump for creating distrust of corporate media by subscribing to “‘Trump’s cult of personality credo that anything or anyone critiquing him is not real.’” Of course, such a view simplifies Trump’s stance toward the unmistakable,  across-the-board negative coverage of his campaign and administration from almost all quarters of the major news media.

One might wish to consider how alternative perspectives and conflicting information might be shared on Facebook or similar platforms once such “trustworthiness” guidelines are in play and in the wake of a complex public event, such as a mass shooting or terrorist attack. One can gather from past instances that major media coverage and commentary are primarily devoted to publicizing the official, state-sponsored narrative. Anomalies and contradictions will be deemed “untrustworthy” and accordingly tossed down the digital memory hole.

 

 

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The Parkland School Shooting Post That Got Tony Mead Banned from Facebook

Dr. Eowyn
FellowshipoftheMinds
(April 10, 2018)

Tony Mead is an intrepid Sandy Hook researcher with a Facebook page called “Sandy Hook Hoax“. Two days ago, on April 8, 2018, Facebook took down his page. In its place, is this message:

The only reason Facebook gave Mead for unilaterally and without warning taking down his “Sandy Hook Hoax” page is the vague catch-all “Something you posted doesn’t follow our Community Standards”:

Continue reading The Parkland School Shooting Post That Got Tony Mead Banned from Facebook

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“Want To Freak Yourself Out?” Here Is All The Personal Data That Facebook/Google Collect

 By Tyler Durden
ZeroHedge
03/27/2018

The Cambridge Analytica scandal was never really about Cambridge Analytica.

As we’ve pointed out, neither Facebook nor Cambridge Analytica have been accused of doing anything explicitly illegal (though one could be forgiven for believing they had, based on the number of lawsuits and official investigations that have been announced).

Instead, the backlash to these revelations – which has been justifiably focused on Facebook – is so severe because the public has been forced to confront for the first time something that many had previously written off as an immutable certaintyThat Facebook, Google and the rest of the tech behemoths store reams of personal data, essentially logging everything we do.

Continue reading “Want To Freak Yourself Out?” Here Is All The Personal Data That Facebook/Google Collect

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Facebook and Google Are Today’s Thought Police

Personal Experiences From the Land of Orwellian Censorship

By James F. Tracy

Social media sites that have for many years allowed for the free and unimpeded discussion and exchange of ideas are now eliminating the posts and even entire accounts of content producers sharing observations and analyses that question the official narratives of complex events. This is straight out of a dystopian novel and entirely alarming. It won’t be surprising if colossal blog-hosting outlets such as WordPress.com eventually follow suit.

In late February 2018 YouTube has taken aim at several channels of well-known alternative media personalities using the platform, including David Seaman, Ron Johnson, Scott Creighton, and The Richie Allen Show. The common denominator of all these outlets is that they examine the relationships between the intelligence community, transnational forces, and political institutions.

The Fate of David Seaman, Ron Johnson, Scott Creighton, and Richie Allen’s YouTube Channels

Allen, for example, has over the years hosted an array of guests, many of whom hold nonconformist, “conspiracy”-oriented positions on political concerns and complex public events. At the time YouTube terminated Allen’s channel he had around 70,000 subscribers and his videos had many millions of views. Allen’s channel is one of many that YouTube has summarily pulled the plug on based on the company’s own subjective judgement and reaction to third party pressure.

Continue reading Facebook and Google Are Today’s Thought Police

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Obama: Fake News On Facebook Hurts Democracy

People need to pay attention to “what’s true and what’s not,” he said.

[Editor’s Note: We have reached truly Orwellian proportions when the president calls out public discussion and “fake news.” What makes this a real howler is that Obama has presided over countless government and media-constructed events at home and abroad alongside the 2012 repeal of the 1948 Smith-Mindt Act banning psychological operations targeting the American public ]

Marina Fang
The Huffington Post

President Barack Obama on Thursday pointed to the profusion of fake news on social media as a sign that people should not take democracy for granted.

In a joint press conference with German Chancellor Angela Merkel, Obama warned that the ease with which people can promulgate fraudulent news stories threatens basic democratic principles.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xcb8XcV9XIo

“In an age where there’s so much active misinformation ― and it’s packaged very well, and it looks the same when you see it on a Facebook page or you turn on your television ― where some overzealousness on the part of, you know, a U.S. official is equated with constant and severe repression elsewhere, if everything seems to be the same, and no distinctions are made, then we won’t know what to protect,” Obama said.

“We won’t know what to fight for, and we can lose so much of what we’ve gained in terms of the kind of democratic freedoms and market-based economies and prosperity that we’ve come to take for granted,” he added.

More…

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Israel and Facebook Team Up to Imprison Palestinian Children

Social media posts deemed as “incitement to commit violence against Israelis”

fbcensospalestine

via teleSUR

Israel has been interrogating and imprisoning dozens of Palestinian minors for months without any legal representation or a parent’s presence.

As Facebook gives the Israeli government more access to posts deemed as “incitement,” occupation forces have been raiding the homes of Palestinians children and detaining them for months over posts on the social media site, a report by the Defense for Children International-Palestine said Monday.

The group spoke with several Palestinian minors who were arrested for their Facebook posts, interrogated for hours and then kept in prison for months without charges under the Israeli policy of “administrative detention.”

Continue reading Israel and Facebook Team Up to Imprison Palestinian Children

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