Tuesday 22 October 2019

Oversight body binding on me - Zuckerberg

 

Mark Zuckerberg
Mark Zuckerberg

Elizabeth Culliford

Facebook will allow a new outside oversight board to make final decisions on whether individual pieces of content can be displayed on the social media site - but the group won't be able to make policy changes, the company has said.

The social media giant, which has about 2.4bn monthly users, is moving to take down objectionable photos and videos after long-standing criticism for doing too little to combat hate speech, cyber-bullying and other content that violates the site's "community standards."

The board is intended as a type of appeals body through which users can challenge company decisions on controversial content.

"The board's decision will be binding, even if I or anyone at Facebook disagrees with it," CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in a statement, referring to calls on specific content, such as photos and videos.

Facebook has created a charter for the group, now updated, after a global consultation process.

While the new board cannot make policy, the company will be required to respond publicly to any recommendations the board makes.

Facebook said it expects to announce some members by the end of the year and the board should start hearing cases in early 2020.

Some initial members of the board, which will likely have between 11 and 40 members when fully staffed, will help select later ones. The public will also be able to put forward candidates for the board through a recommendations portal.

Both Facebook and its users will be able to submit cases. Decisions will be made by panels of five members and then sent to the rest of the board.

Board members, whose positions are part time, will be screened for conflicts of interest, including links to Facebook.

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