Facebook language gaps weaken screening of hate and terrorism

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There’s a lot of buzz about Facebook lately and this social media giant is again in the hefty week of headline, though the news isn’t just about the company earnings but the leaks that are suddenly coming out every week exposing the inner working of the websites used by billions of people around the world. Lately, the Associated Press revealed from Facebook indicated that how Facebook`s language gap weakens webbing of hate and terrorism around the world.

In Gaza and Syria, some political bodies like activists and journalists feel that Facebook edits their content indicating peaceful content as terrorist content, and in some parts of the world like India and Myanmar political groups use Facebook to encourage violence, as AP said. Still, Instagram banned the hashtag Al-Aqsa which is the reference to the Al-Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem’s Old City in response to the Gaza raging and pressure forcefully across west Asia in May.

Latterly Facebook apologized as it owns Instagram explaining that the conclusion had mistaken the third holiest point in Islam for the militant group Al-Aqsa killers Brigade, a fortified offshoot of the temporal Fatah party. Besides, many Arabic users thought it was the basic vigorous example of how the social media giant muzzles political speech in the region and the company did frequent apologies after similar clumsy contents removal. Frances Haugen, who worked with Facebook for more than 2 years said that the problems are far more than planned than just as many innocent miscalculations and that the company knew about the depth of these shortcomings but did not do much about it. It has also shown that similar problems aren’t just related to the Arabic language but numerous others, according to an examination of a file, it revealed that in some part of the world where violence develop suddenly, terrorist content and hate speech multiply because the company remains short on speakers who speak original languages and understand cultural contexts. And its platforms have failed to develop artificial intelligence results that can catch dangerous content in different languages.

In countries like Afghanistan and Myanmar, these ambiguities have allowed languages that can annoy people to flourish on the platform, while in Syria and the Palestinian territories, Facebook suppresses ordinary speech, assessing countryside prohibition on common words. The director of the Middle East Institute’s Cyber Program, Eliza Campbell said that ‘the root problem is that the platform was never built with the intention it would one day intervene the political speech of everyone in the world, but for the quantum of political significance and resources that Facebook has, moderation is a bafflingly under-resourced project.             

A speaker from Facebook gave a statement to AP that they’re recruiting more staff with local dialect and topic expertise to support the review capacity worldwide and have invested in the same, over the last past two years. In continuation to the Arabic content moderation, he said that “We still have more work to do. We conduct research to better understand this complexity and identify how we can improve.” Wherein in Myanmar, they failed to stop the spread of hate speech targeting the minority Rohingya Muslim population. Though Facebook is saying that they’re working but it seems that they’re just saying everything and not working on anything said some critics.

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Some of the reports said that, with the size of the Arabic user base and implicit inflexibility of offline harm, it’s surely of the highest significance to put more resources into the task of perfecting the Arabic system. But there’s yet not one clear strategy to break this. In India, the documents show Facebook employees debating last March whether it could secure down on the “fear-mongering, anti-Muslim narratives” that far-right Hindu nationalist groups broadcast on their platforms. In response to the questions asked by the AP, Facebook said that consults independent experts to develop its moderation policies and goes to great lengths to ensure they’re agnostic to religion, region, political outlook, or ideology.

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