Facebook to “fact check” photos, propaganda posters and videos – but how accurate is their “fact checking”, and what happens when Facebook fact checkers must apply subjective interpretation? There is a risk that Facebook will become the arbiter of truth, and due to a false positive problem, turn fake facts into true facts.
An image search for the word “idiot” across 7 different search engines yields curious results.
Tweets published by those with verified “blue check mark” accounts get greater visibility on Twitter. Twitter also admitted to using algorithms to shadow banning 600,00 accounts including those of U.S. Congressional representatives. Twitter is a mess.
Twitter’s failed algorithm censored people based on their assessment of their followers, over which the censored person has no control. This caused Twitter to effectively shadow ban over 600,000 accounts, including those belonging to members of Congress.
A web site purports to determine if your Twitter account has been shadow banned.
A reporter, and some of her readers, posted links to a published news report she wrote for her employer, the New York Post. Facebook deleted all of the status updates with links to the published news report even though there is nothing in the article that violates any Facebook policies.
What happens when employers require that you may only have a clean, moral, “fit lifestyle”, free of politics and political controversy and require you give them access to your social media to prove it?
What if your employer believes that a lack of a public social media presence means you are hiding something (like you are not on social media)?
What happens when public sector workers are protected by law from similar rules and can freely express their political beliefs free of employer repercussions?
Facebook and Twitter are algorithmically assigning users a secret “trustworthiness” score. This score is used to determine whether your posts are seen by others – in effect, its a computational shadow ban on users. Twitter takes into account who you follow and who follows you and their scores – which means people you have no control over may be determining your trustworthiness score.
The First Amendment prevents the government from censoring or compelling or controlling your speech. But the First Amendment does not apply to what businesses may do with their clients and customers. Social media companies are free to censor as they wish.
Does this provide a way for the government to bypass the First Amendment and restrict speech? A tweet by a U.S. Senator seems to advocate for outsourcing censorship to private entities.
We do not know much about PragerU but a situation involving that group and Facebook confirms that Facebook does indeed shadow ban groups and pages.
Facebook says they made an error in shadow banning the group’s posts and videos and has since restored them. But in the process, they confirmed they are using shadow bans.
This sure looks like an admission of shadow banning – this from Twitter:
“We want to be clear that we do not shadow ban according to political ideology or viewpoint. We do rank the timeline and we do that with the principle of relevance, but all the content is still there — you just have to do more work to see it.”
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This propaganda poster is now spreading online. The original Vox Tweet is here. It contains a link to a video explaining their thinking. They are clear in their video that they are not advocating censoring these individuals. The video concludes with the problems that emerge when speech is censored and the practical problems of policing platforms like YouTube that see 400 hours of new video uploaded every minute. The Vox video does not encourage censorship. Commentary There is, though, a…
What could possibly go wrong? The content filtering is because … social media propaganda and fake news. Source: Govt to introduce ‘content filtering’ to check social media rumours | Dhaka Tribune
Facebook restricts certain conduct on its platform. However, journalists and academics are seeking to receive special privileges to do things that are prohibited for others. Journalists and academics, for example, would be permitted to set up fake accounts with fake or curated content, for the purpose of studying users. Individuals, however, would be banned from conducting the same research and thus, would be prohibited from verifying or evaluating the work of journalists and academics. Basically, the proposal is to have…