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For the sake of what it’s termed racial justice, Facebook has reportedly begun ranking so-called hate speech by race, religion and ethnicity and sexuality, and then prioritizing the removal of hate speech pertaining to only certain groups of people.
Facebook’s new policies prioritize the removal of hate speech directed at blacks, multiracial people, Muslims, Jews and members of the LGBT community. Conversely, they deprioritize the removal of hate speech targeting whites, men and Americans.
In a profile of these new changes, The Washington Post suggested Thursday that they were motivated in part by some black Facebook users complaining about their inability to post what sounds like hate speech against their perceived enemies, including men.
“Tamela J. Gordon, a Miami-based writer who runs a closed group for about 115 Black women, said that after repeated flaggings from Facebook, she and her group members have also started to avoid the word ‘white,’ as well as the word ‘Black’ when capitalized, phrases that pair the words ‘hate’ and ‘men’ or ‘disgust’ and ‘men,’ and most recently the phrase ‘men are trash,'” the outlet reported.
“We are constantly getting reported, getting banned, for content shared within the group as well as content shared outside the group,” she said to the Post.
“In this group there are a lot of women in very desperate situations, dealing with things like domestic violence, extreme poverty. It’s hard knowing that we are being watched and that our expression is monitored and restricted.”
She and those like her believe they’re being unfairly targeted.
“The rules [are] different for us, applied more harshly for us,” Lace Watkins, who runs a Facebook page focused on so-called “anti-racism,” complained.
Yet last year the social media network censored Angel Mom Mary Ann Mendoza for simply raising awareness about illegal alien crime. Her son, Arizona police officer Brandon Mendoza, was killed in 2014 by an illegal alien drunk driver.
“Mendoza [said] that Facebook removed the posts themselves. … taking them down from her Facebook page until she, herself, deleted them,” Breitbart reported at the time.
“Likewise, Mendoza said Facebook temporarily blocked her from posting to the nonprofit Angel Families organization’s page, a group that helps provide support for the family and friends of Americans and legal immigrants killed and murdered by illegal aliens.”
Mendoza’s experience was not cited by the Post.
She was also suspended and then later banned by Twitter last year:
Mary Ann Mendoza is not a popular woman among tech companies, it seems. Mendoza, an “angel mom” whose son was killed by a drunk driver that was illegally in this country, was suspended from Twitter in July for doing what she’s done for years: Posting about illegal immigration. pic.twitter.com/8OcX7NaUzT
— connie #ALLlivesALWAYSmatter (@iclarity2) September 15, 2019
As to why Facebook has chosen to cater to the interests of complainers such as Gordon and Watkins, the Post suggested it’ll be better for their bottom line.
“Internal research [in 2017] showed that Black and Hispanic users were the most engaged groups on Facebook, in terms of overall activity and the numbers of videos watched and uploaded,” the Post reported.
It added that the growing complaints from black and Hispanic users “worried” company executives who feared “frustrated users might decamp for a competing platform, such as Twitter or Snapchat, where they felt they could speak more freely, according to the documents and interviews with two Facebook employees who researched the issue.”
Twitter and Snapchat’s policies purport to target all hate speech equally, though concerns about their left-wing bias have been brewing for years.
Facebook used to also ostensibly target all hate speech.
“Facebook has long banned hate speech — defined as violent or dehumanizing speech — based on race, gender, sexuality and other protected characteristics. It owns Instagram and has the same hate speech policies there,” the Post noted.
As a result, the company’s hate speech algorithms treated comments such as “white people are stupid” the same as they treated similar comments about blacks.
But because whites “have not been historically marginalized,” the Post continued, this was problematic to racial activists such as Arisha Hatch, the vice president of Color of Change, a left-wing non-profit that, ironically, is pro-censorship (example below).
— God Bless America (@GodFamilyHealth) August 26, 2020
“To me this is confirmation of what we’ve been demanding for years, an enforcement regime that takes power and historical dynamics into account,” she said to the Post in regard to Facebook’s new racial priority algorithms.
In other words, she appears to believe that the historical oppression committed by whites, men and apparently Americans should entitle certain people, including blacks, to spout hate speech against these same groups.
To be clear, comments such as “white people are stupid” will still be considered hate speech. However, their removal won’t be prioritized.
“Facebook still considers such attacks to be hate speech, and users can still report it to the company. However, the company’s technology now treats them as ‘low-sensitivity’ — or less likely to be harmful — so that they are no longer automatically deleted by the company’s algorithms,” the Post confirmed.
It’s not clear though that they’ll be removed even if and when someone reports them.
Regardless, Facebook stands by this decision.
“We know that hate speech targeted towards underrepresented groups can be the most harmful, which is why we have focused our technology on finding the hate speech that users and experts tell us is the most serious,” a spokesperson said to the Post.
“Over the past year, we’ve also updated our policies to catch more implicit hate speech, such as content depicting Blackface, stereotypes about Jewish people controlling the world, and banned Holocaust denial.”
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