Have you ever scrolled past something on Facebook so disgusting and appalling you wondered how on earth it hasn’t been deleted? And no I’m not talking about your Uncle’s feeble attempt at a selfie, I’m talking about acts of violence, animal abuse, hate speech, nudity and other disturbing imagery. Well, finally we’ve been given a peek behind the scenes at Facebook HQ, with the employee guidelines for censored content being released to the public.
Before we get into what is/isn’t censored it is important to understand that every minute on Facebook 510,000 comments are posted, 293,000 statuses are updated and 136,000 photos are shared so even with these guidelines and the world’s most efficient moderators, some pieces of content will sneak through the gaps because, well Facebook would to employ an entire population of Australia to moderate that amount of content in real-time.
Facebook’s leaked guidelines cover everything from pornographic imagery, to acts of animal abuse to photos of Holocaust nudity. Decisions made about what does/doesn’t meet compliance are actually quite surprising and at times confusing. Here is a video from The Guardian to explain the guidelines.
Facebook has long focussed on preserving free speech on the platform, with founder Mark Zuckerberg believing some things just need to be seen, no matter how disturbing, as they are important for increasing awareness and starting a conversation. But how far is too far? Let us know what you think in the comments. Do you feel like you are exposed too often to this kind of content? Or are you in agreeance with Zuckerberg that disturbing content can have a positive impact on society?