Freedom of speech is something that we as Americans hold very dear. It’s practically a Smeagol, crouching in a cave, showing our teeth to anyone who tries to take our precious kind of attachment. However, while there are indeed many who would want to take that right away, we sometimes forget that the right of free speech doesn’t extend to the private sector. Meaning, you can shout about your beliefs on a street corner, but not so much in a private shop, without the proprietor’s permission.
The private shop to which I’m referring today is the social media conglomerate you’re probably scrolling through right now called Facebook. This monster of an online presence has decided that they’re going to crack down on what they call their “community standards” and sane out all the bad bits that you shouldn’t be seeing.
The Daily Mail reports that Facebook has been hiring young Filipinos to act as content curators on the Facebook platform. The workers reportedly work grueling shifts for little pay and decide on whether or not content on Facebook should be removed or allowed.
Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg stated earlier this month that the social media company, worth $435 billion, would be adding another 3,000 content moderators to the team of 4,500 it already employs and pledged to “improve the process for [reporting content] quickly.” It was discovered during an investigation by the Mail on Sunday that Facebook outsources much of its content policing to the professional services firm Accenture.
Via Daily Mail:
They are the army of workers who man Facebook’s front line, tasked with removing offensive and terror-related material from the internet giant’s site.
But a Mail on Sunday investigation has discovered the multi-billion pound social networking site employs hundreds of young Filipinos – some with limited English skills – who work gruelling shifts and say they earn just £1.81 an hour.
They are forced to decide in seconds whether or not to delete videos, pictures and posts which are too graphic or violent.
We may not like their censoring of the content that we see, but sadly it is their right to be the liberal watchdogs of social media. It’s not a big surprise that Zuckerberg and those like him would attempt to use their considerable influence to change public opinion, but the important thing is for you to be aware of it. We joke that nothing is official until it’s on Facebook, but don’t let that lull you into a false sense of security. You will need to pay attention, read the words, don’t just scroll through the pictures; make an intellectual decision about how to process the events of the world. Hint; you may not want to trust that everything you see online is the internet at it’s finest. Try looking away from your screen and checking out the IRL version of what’s going on around you. It might surprise you.