Facebook to bar users from live streaming for violating norms

PTI New Delhi | Updated on May 15, 2019 Published on May 15, 2019

Our goal is to minimise risk of abuse, says Guy Rosen   -  REUTERS

Social media giant Facebook will bar users from live streaming for a certain period of time in case they violate its norms for using the facility, a move that comes two months after Christchurch mosque attack.

The company - which has 2.38 billion monthly active users globally - said it is also investing $ 7.5 million in new research partnerships with academics from three universities to collaborate on improving image and video analysis technology. Facebook Vice President (Integrity) Guy Rosen, in a blogpost, said the company has been reviewing how to limit the use of its services for causing harm or spreading hate.

“Today we are tightening the rules that apply specifically to live. We will now apply a ‘one strike’ policy to ‘live’ in connection with a broader range of offences. From now on, anyone who violates our most serious policies will be restricted from using Live for set periods of time — for example 30 days — starting on their first offense,” he said. Citing an example, Rosen said someone who shares a link to a statement from a terrorist group with no context, will now be immediately blocked from using live for a set period of time.

To minimise risk

“We plan on extending these restrictions to other areas over the coming weeks, beginning with preventing those same people from creating ads on Facebook... Our goal is to minimise risk of abuse on live while enabling people to use live in a positive way every day,” he said. In March, over 50 people were gunned down at two Christchurch mosques by a self-described white supremacist, who broadcast live footage on Facebook. The first user report on the original video came in 29 minutes after the video started, and 12 minutes after the live broadcast ended.

Facebook has, in a previous post, said the video was viewed fewer than 200 times during the live broadcast. Including the views during the live broadcast, the video was viewed about 4,000 times in total before being removed from Facebook. Rosen - in the latest blogpost - explained that one of the challenges Facebook faced in the days after the Christchurch attack was a proliferation of many different variants of the video of the attack. People had shared edited versions of the video that made it hard for its systems to detect despite deploying a number of techniques, including video and audio matching technology.

Published on May 15, 2019
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