facebookspy

There has been much in the news lately about Facebook taking steps to remove fake news from its website.

Back in March, the social media giant flagged prominent warnings on its site advising users not to trust news stories that could not be confirmed by an official or well-known source.

When users logged into their Facebook account, it would display an official warning, telling people to be wary of fake news.

On some news stories that were suspected to be untrue, it would flag up a message stating:

‘Disputed by Snopes.com and Politfact’ below the story. All of this seems like good, sensible precautions right?

Well recently the social media giant has come under fire for reportedly refusing to delete child pornography and extremist material.

According to a report by the Times, scores of videos and images were ‘flagged up’ as child pornography to the website’s moderators, alongside several other images believed to be of extremist and terrorist nature.

The material was however deemed not to be in breach of Facebook’s ‘community standards’.

Offensive materials included a beheading video produced by Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL), posters supporting the recent terrorist attacks in London and Egypt, a video apparently depicting the sexual assault of a child, and violent pedophilic cartoons.

Commenting on the findings by the Times, leading QC Julian Knowles said: “In my view, many of the images and videos identified by the Times are illegal. One video appears to depict a sexual assault on a child. That would undoubtedly breach UK indecency laws. The video showing a beheading is very likely to be a publication that encourages terrorism.”

In a similar investigation, the BBC flagged up 100 pictures portraying the sexual abuse of children to Facebook controllers. Only 18 of those images were removed.

Facebook took down some of the content flagged by the Times but allowed pro-jihadist posts to remain, including one cheering on IS terrorists and vowing to bring the ‘holy war’ to “the heart of your homes.”

In response to the investigation, Facebook vice president of global operations Justin Osofsk, said: “We are grateful to the Times for bringing this content to our attention. We have removed all of these images, which violate our policies and have no place on Facebook. We are sorry that this occurred.

“It is clear that we can do better, and we’ll continue to work hard to live up to the high standards people rightly expect of Facebook.”

Akashic Times is the UK’s only online, fully independent not-for-profit newspaper that brings you real news from across the globe.

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