Facebook bug inaccurately deletes posts in a fight against fake coronavirus info

Facebook bug inaccurately deletes posts in a fight against fake coronavirus info
In recent years, big social media platforms have been relying more and more on automation to moderate content. However, this approach does not always work and it’s not the first time we are witnessing some of the anti-spam filters going haywire. Reuters now reports that there was a bug on Facebook, which tagged and removed legitimate posts.

We have heard that Facebook is actively trying to limit the spread of misinformation in these challenging times and it announced that posts regarding the COVID-19, published by unauthorized entities or spreading panic, are going to be removed from the platform. However, due to the public health situation, the tech giant was forced to send people from its moderating team home and thus slightly change its moderation tactics.

Guy Rosen, Facebook’s VP of integrity, wrote in a tweet that all the incorrectly removed posts have been restored. He also added that the removed posts were not only about COVID-19, but other topics were affected as well. The bug had also spread to Instagram, as there were reports of posts removed on there as well, along with links from legitimate news sources being blocked, such as Vox or The Atlantic.

Nevertheless, Rosen stated that the bug is not related to the decision of the company to send content moderators home and rely on outsourcing the work and on “proactive detection” for policy violating content.

Unfortunately, some users on Twitter are claiming that the issue hasn’t been completely resolved and are still getting their posts removed or blocked at the moment.


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