Facebook Algorithm Flags The Declaration Of Independence As “Hate Speech”

UPDATED: Thursday, July 12, 2018 09:52
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Thursday, July 5, 2018 6:50 PM


I believe in solving problems, not sharing them.

I thought this was interesting

Over the last couple of years major social media, news and video platforms have been actively engaged in the censorship of what they believe to be fake news and information. Often spearheaded by third-party review organizations known to have biased views, there have been countless examples of unpopular speech and commentary that has seen its distribution suppressed or outright banned.

While there is most certainly a human element involved in the review and flagging of information, mega Silicon Valley conglomerates have also implemented automated systems to identify potentially hateful and repulsive content.

To give you an idea of the kind of automation in play and what words and ideas are being identified as running contrary to the principles of media aggregators and distributors, consider that Facebook recently banned America’s founding document from being posted.

Since June 24, the Liberty County Vindicator of Liberty County, Texas, has been sharing daily excerpts from the declaration in the run up to July Fourth. The idea was to encourage historical literacy among the Vindicator‘s readers.

The first nine such posts of the project went up without incident.

“But part 10,” writes Vindicator managing editor Casey Stinnett, “did not appear. Instead, The Vindicator received a notice from Facebook saying that the post ‘goes against our standards on hate speech.'”

The post in question contained paragraphs 27 through 31 of the Declaration of Independence, the grievance section of the document wherein the put-upon colonists detail all the irreconcilable differences they have with King George III.

Stinnett says that he cannot be sure which exact grievance ran afoul of Facebook’s policy, but he assumes that it’s paragraph 31, which excoriates the King for inciting “domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavored to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages.”

The removal of the post was an automated action, and Stinnett sent a “feedback message” to Facebook with the hopes of reaching a human being who could then exempt the Declaration of Independence from its hate speech restrictions.

The Vindicator took a screenshot of the post’s removal:

According to the Vindicator, the post was eventually restored after it was manually reviewed.


Saturday, July 7, 2018 3:43 PM


Facebook algorithms were apparently alerted to the use of the phrase "Indian savages" in one part of the Declaration of Independence in one scheduled Facebook post in July 2018, and that post was automatically withheld from publication for about one day.



Saturday, July 7, 2018 4:23 PM


I believe in solving problems, not sharing them.

Which shows that either

1) The Founding Fathers' phraseology wouldn't pass muster with today's ethics, or
2) Algorithms are imperfect tools, and one should not trust "censorship" to them, or
3) Both of the above

Pity would be no more,
If we did not MAKE men poor - William Blake

As long as you insist that everything is the Republicans'/ Democrats' fault, then you fail to grasp the REAL problem with American politics.

America is an oligarchy


Sunday, July 8, 2018 4:29 AM


You guys are Racists!! for sure.


Sunday, July 8, 2018 10:41 AM



Originally posted by SIGNYM:
Which shows that either

1) The Founding Fathers' phraseology wouldn't pass muster with today's ethics, or
2) Algorithms are imperfect tools, and one should not trust "censorship" to them, or
3) Both of the above

The founding fathers were indeed racists. Everybody was. They enslaved and killed brown people all day long.

Algorithms are indeed imperfect tools, and are frequently manipulated by Russian bots, as Sig inadvertently showed us in the "walk away" thread.


Thursday, July 12, 2018 9:52 AM


Facebook touts fight on fake news, but struggles to explain why InfoWars isn't banned

When asked by this reporter how the company could claim it was serious about tackling the problem of misinformation online while simultaneously allowing InfoWars to maintain a page with nearly one million followers on its website, Hegeman said that the company does not "take down false news."

"I guess just for being false that doesn't violate the community standards," Hegeman said, explaining that InfoWars has "not violated something that would result in them being taken down."

Hegeman added, "I think part of the fundamental thing here is that we created Facebook to be a place where different people can have a voice. And different publishers have very different points of view."

While publishers may certainly have a different point of view, InfoWars is no ordinary publisher, and the content it produces does not just offer "different points of view." The media organization is notorious for spreading demonstrably false information and conspiracy theories on a host of issues, including suggesting that the Sandy Hook massacre was a hoax staged by child actors. Earlier this year, the outlet smeared student survivors of the Parkland shooting with baseless attacks, portraying them in one video as actors.

FB is also increasing the amount of Fox News coming through. So much for fighting fake news.

Fox News will be featured in Facebook's news coverage twice as much as any other outlet

More and more useless by the day.






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