Originally intended to put an end to trolls, Facebook's Report Abuse button is being used by pro-government forces to shut down the Facebook pages and profiles of those who criticize it. The result is to effectively silence opposing views using the very tools designed to stop abuse on the social media platform.
Facebook says the "report abuse" button is just one of many tools the company looks at when removing content. "Convincing lots of people to report something won’t cause the information to be taken down or hidden unless there’s something else about it that violates our policies," the rep told us. But it's unclear which policy Trang and the other journalists might have violated, particularly since most of the sites were later reinstated. Facebook declined to comment on particular cases in Vietnam.
But after dozens of cases, the pattern is clear enough. If you swarm a page or a person with enough abuse reports, you can kick them off Facebook. Pro-government forces in Vietnam have learned how to do it, and they’re using it to devastating effect.
|Brazilian President Calls U.S. Surveillance a "Breach of International Law"|
|“How could the country that fought alongside the U.S. in World War II, in Korea, and in Afghanistan be a national-security threat?”|
|The American Dream?|
|Annual prorogation troubling, expert says|
|Parliament blocks Arab parties from contesting general election|
|“Google and Facebook figured out how to commodify 'reality' itself by tracking what people do.”|
|“New York Central trains in the Hudson River valley in 1928 and 1929”|
|“The latest warning sign for cities who are considering signing over public spaces to major tech companies.”|
|“Scientific evidence that digital distraction is damaging our minds.”|
|“Buying a new smartphone every two years is taking a toll on the planet.”|
|The (Very Scary) People of Public Transit|
|"Waymo is reportedly planning to take the next step towards offering a commercial driverless car service in early December."|
|How to Avoid Jury Duty|
|CaptchaTweet: Write Tweets in Captcha Form|
|“Bias, error, and misuse of Artificial Intelligence technologies.”|
|“We need to make algorithms transparent, regulated, and forgiving of the flawed creatures that converse with them.”|
|“Forget reading the book of life—we’re now learning how to write it.”|