Wednesday, 27 March 2019

Facebook prohibits the white nationalism of the platform after the pressure of civil rights groups

Facebook is banning white nationalism and white supremacy from its social network after criticism that it had not done enough to eliminate hate speech on its platform.
فیس بک سفید قوم پرستی پر پابندی لگا رہا ہے
The social media giant said in a blog posted on Wednesday that talks with academics and civil rights groups convinced the company to expand its policies around hate groups.

"Today we are announcing a ban on the praise, support and representation of white nationalism and separatism on Facebook and Instagram, which we will begin to apply next week," the company wrote in the post. "It is clear that these concepts are deeply linked to organized hate groups and have no place in our services."

Facebook's scrutiny reached new heights in the last two weeks after an armed man in Christchurch, New Zealand, used Facebook to broadcast live his attacks on two mosques that killed 50 people.

According to Facebook's change, people seeking terms associated with white supremacy will see a link to the page of Life After Hate, a non-profit organization that helps people leave hate groups, the company said.

The change was reported for the first time on Wednesday for the first time in the Motherboard technology publication of Vice Media, which had previously discovered that Facebook policies prohibited white supremacy, but allowed white nationalism and white separatism.

The social network, which has more than 2 billion users, has faced growing criticism about its decisions about what type of discourse to eliminate and what to leave, and maintains an extensive rulebook that employees use to decide what to censor.

"In the future, while people will still be able to show pride in their ethnic heritage, we will not tolerate praise or support for white nationalism and separatism," Facebook said in its publication.

Previously, Facebook took action in the wake of race-based violence, removing links to a white supremacist website and removing a page used to organize the "Unite The Right" rally in 2017.

Color of Change, a defense group that has asked technology companies to do more to combat racial hatred, called Facebook's decision a "critical step forward."

"The Facebook update should make Twitter, YouTube and Amazon act urgently to stop the growth of white nationalist ideologies, which find space on the platforms to spread the violent ideas and rhetoric that inspired the tragic attacks witnessed in Charlottesville, Pittsburgh. and now Christchurch.

A Twitter representative on Wednesday refused to say whether the company was considering adopting a similar change. Amazon and YouTube did not respond immediately to requests for comments.

Twitter does not explicitly prohibit white nationalism, although its rules tell users that they can not join organizations that "use or promote violence against civilians." Its rules also prohibit the use of "hate images or symbols" in profile pictures, and Twitter says so. enforces these policies vigorously and independently of ideology.

Facebook has moved in recent years to expand its policies and take action against hate speech and misinformation, and the company has begun to recruit external perspectives into its decision-making.

On Tuesday, Ime Archibong, vice president of Facebook product partnerships, revealed some details about a new supervisory board the company is forming to provide guidance on its "most contentious and controversial content decisions" and "publicly blame if we do not. " do them well. "

"The board, as currently envisaged, will be comprised of some 40 global experts with experience in content, privacy, freedom of expression, human rights, journalism and security," Archibong wrote in a blog post. "When necessary, we will complement the experience of members through consultations with geographic and cultural experts to help ensure that decisions are fully informed."

Some US lawmakers want the federal government to do more to learn about the relationship between online extremism and hate crimes. Democrats in the House of Representatives and the Senate, including Sen. Bob Casey, a Democrat in Pennsylvania, have introduced legislation that would require Justice and Commerce departments to study how people use the Internet to fuel hate crimes.

Anne Speckhard, the director of the International Center for the Study of Violent Extremism, or ICSVE, told NBC News that recommending anti-hate groups is something more for Facebook.

Speckhard studies counter-extremism, specifically how groups like ISIS are recruited over the Internet, and said Google had taken similar measures to favor anti-extremist content when users at risk looked for terms that would normally lead them to ISIS propaganda .

"We know that [Facebook] has been working non-stop on this," Speckhard said. "The truth is that the hate speech of the far right is much more difficult to identify than the ISIS films. People use humor. They are more ingenious about it than ISIS. "

Facebook funds the documentary project of ICSVE, entitled "Breaking the ISIS brand", which has created more than 100 videos that show the members of ISIS disillusioned by their cause. The videos are intended to be shared on social networks.

Researchers of domestic extremism largely praised the news. Becca Lewis, who studies white supremacy in social media for the non-profit technology research organization Data & Society, called Facebook's announcement "a big step in the right direction and one that is cause for cautious optimism. "

"For years, Facebook has tiptoed on the subject of white supremacy on its website, which has ultimately allowed it to thrive there, almost without control," Lewis said. "These steps suggest that the platform can finally take the problem more seriously than in the past."

Lewis also said it is important to "keep up the pressure on platforms to move forward" with the changes, as social media companies have not always complied with maintaining their platforms after the initial announcements.

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