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Corporations Have Utterly Failed to Protect Speech - Motherboard
Facebook and Twitter are hurting those they should be protecting.

Add this all to the ongoing trainwreck regarding possible election interference on Facebook (a byproduct of the company running ads from essentially anyone who can pay and relying largely on user reports to weed out the bad), and it's very clear that there is a serious problem with how private corporations manage public speech. Namely, the corporations in charge of the largest speech platforms on Earth have utterly failed to manage speech on those platforms, and increasingly seem incapable of doing so.

The actions that Facebook and Twitter take to police speech don't follow any kind of moral compass, are disproportionately applied, and--at least outwardly--seem completely arbitrary. They are full of false equivalences, as in the case of Lil B being banned because, as one Facebook spokesperson told Motherboard, if you flipped his comment around to say black people are violent that would be hateful: "If you just took a step back and replaced it with anything else, those are the type of things that our hate speech policies are intended to capture and they apply equally to all races," the spokesperson said. As if these same platforms aren't full of white people, often with connections to power, saying racist, harmful, hateful things with impunity.

These companies' actions are also often arbitrary and callous, as is the case with Facebook's ongoing campaign to force trans people to use their legal names, a policy that also puts sex workers and survivors of abuse at risk.

by Bernard (bernard) on Sun Oct 15th, 2017 at 12:17:36 PM EST
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