- Major study linking vaping to heart attacks gets retracted 1 Year Ago
- George Zimmerman is suing Pete Buttigieg, Elizabeth Warren Today 2:55 PM
- Netflix’s ‘Horse Girl’ accused of ripping off 2017 indie film Today 2:52 PM
- The Genyus Network is a safe social space for stroke survivors Today 2:20 PM
- MAGA hat-wearing dog finishes last in ‘Today Show’ fan vote—still named winner Today 2:03 PM
- Reddit users share stories of the worst things guests have done in their homes Today 1:25 PM
- WikiLeaks lawyer says Trump offered Assange a pardon—if he’d deny Russian hack Today 1:16 PM
- 6-year-old placed in psychiatric facility for ‘trantrum’ is seen acting calm in body cam footage Today 1:05 PM
- Amy Klobuchar devouring Ivanka Trump is the 2020 vore crossover no one wanted Today 12:32 PM
- Review: Hulu’s ‘Devs’ is a brilliant work of near-future science fiction Today 11:53 AM
- Rapper Pop Smoke dead at 20 Today 11:42 AM
- KSI says he will back Team YouTube if Logan Paul fights Antonio Brown Today 11:29 AM
- William Barr questions whether tech companies should be protected for user content Today 11:10 AM
- The Bloomberg campaign has reached its post-parody zenith Today 10:35 AM
- Ben Affleck explains why he lied about his back tattoo Today 10:28 AM
In a blog post Thursday, Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg outlined his company’s plan to tackle the biggest issues the company faces in its battle against viral misinformation and prohibited content. The second in an end-of-year series, the post sketches the company’s blueprint for “Content Governance and Enforcement.”
Throughout the post, Zuckerberg emphasized the company’s focus on “proactive enforcement” of its policies and its reliance on carefully trained, artificially intelligent systems to detect and even take down problematic content before it’s shared. By the end of 2019, the company claims its AI should be sophisticated enough to identify “the vast majority” of problematic content such as fake accounts and instances of self-harm or hate speech.
Facebook also plans to target what it refers to as “borderline content,” or content provocative enough to toe the line of what’s prohibited without necessarily warranting removal. Zuckerberg explained that closer to this policy line content falls, the greater engagement it garners, thus incentivizing polarizing and sensationalist content. To deter this trend, Facebook is calibrating its AI systems to catch borderline content before it goes viral and limit its distribution.
With this new goal in mind, Facebook particularly hopes to target clickbait and posts that spread misinformation. Its approach isn’t limited to news, either. Photos that skate dangerously close to nudity or posts with offensive language just short of hate speech were flagged by these system changes and subsequently saw declining distribution.
Zuckerberg emphasized that Facebook’s ongoing struggle with borderline content isn’t solved by simply moving the threshold of what’s considered acceptable. “This engagement pattern seems to exist no matter where we draw the lines, so we need to change this incentive and not just remove content,” he wrote.
Additionally, Zuckerberg announced the development of an independent group to oversee the appeals process for content users argue was wrongly flagged. The company is only beginning to decide the makeup and criteria of this body, but it plans to begin receiving international feedback by the first half of 2019 and roll out an established group by the end of next year.
“Over time, I believe this body will play an important role in our overall governance,” Zuckerberg said. “Just as our board of directors is accountable to our shareholders, this body would be focused only on our community.”
The CEO’s post comes a day after a scathing New York Times report detailing Facebook’s attempts to deflect a negative image given recent scandals, most notably Russian interference during the 2016 election and the exposure of 87 million users’ information to Cambridge Analytica. According to the Times, Facebook launched a campaign to shift the public’s anger away from itself and toward Apple and Google by financing critical articles about the rival tech giants.
H/T the Verge
Alyse Stanley is a video game and culture reporter based in Virginia with words at Polygon and USGamer. When she’s not writing about memes, she edits Unwinnable’s monthly magazine. You can follow her on Twitter @pithyalyse.