Facebook’s Oversight Board takes its first six cases

Facebook’s Oversight Board, an independent body that reviews Facebook moderation decisions, has accepted its first cases. The six appeals involve content removed under Facebook’s hate speech rules, nudity ban, and misinformation policies. They’re now open for seven days of public comment, after which the board will determine whether the posts should have been removed.

Most of the cases involve users outside the US posting non-English content — a known weak point for Facebook moderation — and at least two hinge on the nuance of someone publishing hate content to implicitly criticize it. One user posted screenshots of offensive tweets from former Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad, for instance, allegedly to raise awareness of “horrible words.” Another post involved a user who shared an alleged Joseph Goebbels quote, but who appealed by saying they were comparing Goebbels’s words to a “fascist model” in US politics.

Each case will be referred to

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From hate speech to nudity, Facebook’s oversight board picks its first cases

By Elizabeth Culliford

graphical user interface: FILE PHOTO: Facebook logos

FILE PHOTO: Facebook logos

(Reuters) – Facebook Inc’s independent Oversight Board announced on Tuesday the first six cases where it could overrule the social media company’s decisions to remove certain pieces of content from its platforms.

The board, which Facebook created in response to criticism of its handling of problematic content, said it had received 20,000 cases since it opened its doors in October.

Three of the six cases involved content that Facebook removed for breaking hate speech rules.

An Oversight Board spokesman said hate speech cases had been “the most significant proportion” of appeals received.

“Hate speech is an especially difficult area,” Jamal Greene, one of the board’s co-chairs and a professor at Columbia Law School, told Reuters in an interview. “It’s not that easy … for an algorithm to get the context of” such speech.

Gallery: A timeline of voting rights in

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Does Facebook Portal work with Messenger? Yes, here’s how you can use Facebook’s messaging app and video-calling devices together

a person standing in front of a television: Portal users can link their Messenger account to the video-calling device, but not all Messenger features are available. Facebook

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Portal users can link their Messenger account to the video-calling device, but not all Messenger features are available. Facebook

  • You can use a Facebook Portal device with Messenger to call certain contacts.
  • Not all features of the Messenger chat app are available on Portal devices.
  • Having Facebook Messenger isn’t a requirement to use Portal, but the chat platform can enhance your experience through Rooms, AR, and more.
  • Portal is a series of specialized tablets and video-calling devices made by Facebook that feature an enhanced camera and speaker. 
  • Visit Business Insider’s Tech Reference library for more stories.

Portal, Facebook’s proprietary tablet, is explicitly geared to video chatting with your cadre of Facebook contacts.

That includes your Messenger contacts, an advantage for those Facebook users who spend more time on the chat app than the social media platform. 

Despite being a Facebook-made device, it’s not a requirement

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Facebook’s purchases of WhatsApp, Instagram target of likely antitrust case

As the state and federal probes enter their final phases, investigators have explored how Instagram and WhatsApp changed in the years after Facebook purchased them, according to the three people familiar with the matter, who spoke on the condition of anonymity to describe a law enforcement proceeding. Government antitrust watchdogs have weighed whether to contend in lawsuits that these transactions have left users with worse services — and fewer privacy protections — than they might have had if the companies had remained independent, the sources said.

With the text-messaging service WhatsApp, in particular, Facebook had promised users that it would preserve the messaging company’s independence and strong privacy protections when it was purchased in 2014. It made the same commitment to regulators, who then gave a greenlight to the deal. But Facebook reversed course years later and has sought to integrate its users’ data with the social networking site’s other

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Facebook’s experimental iOS app E.gg is now available throughout the US


E.gg is now available to all iOS users in the US.


Facebook on Wednesday said it’s making its experimental iOS app E.gg available for download to anyone in the US. The social media giant unveiled the app, which is based on bringing back the internet of the ’90s, in July. It’s the creation of Facebook’s experimental app team, New Product Experimentation, and is “a platform for freeform creative expression,” the company says.

“E.gg was inspired by the raw and exploratory spirit of the early internet: manically-blinking GIFs, passionate guestbook entries and personal web pages devoted to niche interests,” Facebook said in a post. “With E.gg, you can create zine-like, freeform pages from your phone and share them on the web.”

Users can piece together their own collections of images, GIFs, shapes

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Twitter and Facebook’s diverging philosophies were on display in the latest tech hearing

The latest tech hearing was a study in contrasts. Contrasts between lawmakers who made an effort to stay on topic in a hearing ostensibly about social media and the 2020 election and those who… just talked about whatever was on their minds.

Also contrasts between then and now. Social media companies previously treated any attempt at Section 230 reform as radioactive; now, they’ve come around to cooperating so they’re not cut out of the conversation altogether.

But most of all it was a study in contrasts for the two men on the virtual witness stand: Facebook’s equivocating chief executive, who always manages to speak too much in the service of saying very little and Twitter’s laconic business mystic who came off as measurably more poised to meet the moment, wizard beard and all.

In a signal that the hearing’s stated purpose would not reflect the grab bag of gripes on

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Facebook’s Labels On Trump’s Election Lies Haven’t Stopped His Posts From Going Viral

Illustration for article titled Facebook Knows That Labeling Trumps Election Lies Hasnt Stopped His Posts From Going Viral

Photo: Chip Somodevilla / Staff (Getty Images)

Facebook’s attempt to slow the spread of President Trump’s misinformation and outright lies by affixing warning labels to the content has done little to stop the posts from going viral—and the platform is apparently well aware.

According to internal conversations reviewed by Buzzfeed News, data scientists in the employ of Facebook freely admit that the new labels being attached to misleading or false posts as part of a broader strategy to stop the spread of election-related misinformation—referred to internally as “informs”—have had little to no impact on how posts are being shared, whether they’re coming from Trump or anyone else.

“We have evidence that applying these informs to posts decreases their reshares by ~8%,” the data scientists said, according to Buzzfeed. “However given that Trump has SO many shares on any given post, the decrease is not going

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