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.
|A WASP Speaks|
|Google Now Censors Searching for BitTorrent, But Not How To Build a Bomb (via @openattitude)|
|Canada to Share Embassies With "Its Former Colonial Master"|
|The Prime Minister is on YouTube, and He Takes Questions|
|The #OccupyWallStreet Hashtag is Not Being Censored|
|“Facebook played a 'determining role' in stirring up hatred against Rohingya Muslims.”|
|“The Pentagon’s relatively quiet tip-toe into converting the U.S. Armed Forces to a machine-majority force.”|
|3D Printed $10,000 House|
|Future Horizon's Plasma Lightsabers|
|Japanese Robot Serves Ice Cream From Inside a Vending Machine|
|“The idea is that someday in the future scientists will scan your bricked brain and turn it into a computer simulation.”|
|CaptchaTweet: Write Tweets in Captcha Form|
|“Clearly, no one is going to build weapons that have sufficient general intelligence to, for example, decide and execute a plan to take over the world.”|
|“New green policies so hard-hitting and extensive they can be felt across the world.”|
|“Contains all the same components as cow’s milk, [...] but doesn’t use any animals in its production process.”|
|The (Very Scary) People of Public Transit|
|“Traditional path to economic growth may close to all but a handful of developing countries.”|