Working closely, we will deal with hate
In March of this year, the whole world was shocked by the terrorist attacks at the Christchurch Mosque. After this sad event, the entire Facebook community sincerely empathized with the victims, their families, as well as all Muslims of New Zealand. Such incidents leave a deep impression of bitterness and tragedy, evoking sympathy for those who have to face violence because of their religion and traditions. The society expressed tremendous compassion, nobility and unity towards people who have gone through such tremendous grief.
The Facebook company received a lot of messages and questions about why videos with frank scenes of violence from the scene turned out to be on public display and how the company allowed them to load on the platform space. The company’s management took all the necessary measures and conducted a thorough analysis of the case, working closely with the New Zealand police to find out all the circumstances of the incident. Moreover, all accounts on Facebook and Instagram, which could be linked to terrorism, were checked. All pages that fell under suspicion, as were all videos containing acts of violence and assault were deleted. The company launched artificial intelligence to conduct a quick search and prevent the download of such videos to the network, promising its users a higher level of protection against content containing provocations and cruelty. After the terrorist attack, Facebook imposed strict rules on the use of Facebook Live and began to combat hate speech more actively, focusing on supporting the New Zealand community.
First of all, Facebook took a close look at the restrictions applied to those who were blocked by the system for violating the Community Standard and trying to resume their activities. Also, a study was conducted on the possibilities to improve the recognition technology of edited versions of video clips that contain acts of violence. The Facebook team was able to achieve excellent results in this area since the new system algorithms can quickly detect prohibited videos and all their variations, and automatically delete them. Thus, after the attack, the updated technologies computed more than 900 videos that contained fragments of that terrible event. Of course, people with bad intentions will always try to deceive and bypass the protection of the system by violating security measures. Therefore, Facebook is constantly working to improve its technology and continues to strengthen the verification process, which helps to respond more quickly and efficiently to the appearance or attempt to upload such videos to the network.
Secondly, the company is actively working to eliminate groups, content and personal pages that are engaged in hate speech on Facebook and Instagram. Moreover, the management of the companies came to the mutual opinion that in addition to actions aimed at creating materials containing acts of violence or appeals to cruelty, comments and any other types of support for such content will be stopped immediately and regarded as manifestations and igniting hate. Focusing on New Zealand and Australia, Facebook has begun to use various artificial intelligence tools to find and neutralize several groups that promote cruelty and call for hate. Such groups include the Lads Society, the United Patriots Front, the Antipodean Resistance, and National Front New Zealand, which are prohibited from posting content and using social networks such as Facebook and Instagram. Moreover, all praise and other types of support for these groups will be immediately suppressed. Also, the company has taken strict measures on topics related to separatism and white nationalism, banning the praise and support of such content on both platforms.
Thirdly, Facebook is engaged in supporting the people of New Zealand, focusing on four local organizations that have sent their forces to improve welfare and improve the psychological health of the population. This is done to increase user awareness and disseminate information about the services of these organizations throughout the country. Also, the company closely cooperates with the youth partner, developing methods of additional education, aimed at supporting and shaping the greater stability of the psyche of the younger generation. Facebook has repeatedly declared its willingness to cooperate with the New Zealand Government’s Royal Commission regarding the study of the role of social networks in such attacks. Moreover, the company is ready to review the regulatory models for the use of online platforms in New Zealand, in particular, such areas as data confidentiality, information portability, elections and content moderation.
Facebook continues working on improving its policies, as well as perfecting tools and technologies aimed at enhancing the security of the platform. The company calls for joint efforts to combat cruelty and hatred more effectively, to eradicate these concepts from social networks and to provide the most comfortable conditions for the use of social networks.