Facebook announced that the soft “supervisory board” intended to help make content difficult and political decisions will not be launched until “late autumn”, that is to say almost certainly after the election. You know, the election that everyone fears that Facebook’s inability to control itself is serious.
On Twitter, the board said it wanted to “officially start our task of independent monitoring of Facebook content decisions”, but regrets that it cannot do so for a while. “Our goal is to build a strong institution that will deliver concrete long-term results.”
Sounds good enough, but for many, the purpose of creating the supervisory board – which has been going on since the end of 2018 – was to equip Facebook for the next presidential election, which promises to be something hot.
As my colleague Natasha Lomas described the board of directors during its official announcement:
The Supervisory Board is supposed to sit at the top of the daily routine of moderation of Facebook content, which takes place behind closed doors and with signed nondisclosure agreements, where outsourced armies of entrepreneurs are paid to monitor the sewer in the process of hatred, abuse and violence so that real users do not. must, as a more visible mechanism to resolve and thus (Facebook hopes) to stifle speech-related conflicts.
But as we soon discovered, the forum would have nothing to do with what many would describe as the most dangerous content on Facebook: rapidly spreading disinformation. The council will mainly deal with disputes for the time being. dismantling content, not just contested content. On many questions, its decisions will only be advisory.
Facebook took a laissez faire attitudes towards manipulated media, deliberate misinformation, misleading political advertisements and other disturbing content, and leaders, including Mark Zuckerberg, have regularly reinforced this attitude.
An attempt to hit the company in its portfolio proved to be an unexpected success, with many large companies pledging to at least temporarily advertise on Facebook to protest the policies. Coca-Cola, Ford, REI and even Verizon, the parent company of TipsClear, have signed with #StopHateforProfit. Facebook met with representatives of the effort today and they were, as you would expect, disappointed.
“Today, we have seen little and heard almost nothing,” said Anti-Defamation League CEO Jonathan Greenblatt. It appears that Facebook does not consider the current monetary penalty heavy enough to warrant a serious response.
The delay of the Supervisory Board, even the one that was promised, is just one more drop on the back of the camel.