Wednesday, June 27, 2018

Facebook publishes Community Standards, examines the Hard Questions on hate speech or "dangerous speech"

Today Facebook issued a post on its Community Standards, which is quite long and segmented and shows that nuanced response to complaints is a work in progress, that often has to be sensitive to situations around the world. 

Like Twitter, Facebook now says it will ban people clearly connected to terror organizations or certain other groups grossly objectionable (presumably white supremacy).

Facebook says it does not allow “hate speech” even when legal, but refers to a post on its “Hard Questions Blog” by Richard Allan, link. It points out that Germany has a very short fuse on hate speech and has been known to raid homes for speech that would be acceptable in the U.S. 
Facebook recommends a page by Timothy Barton Ash on the “free speech debate”, with emphasis on Turkey (I like the term “hyperreality”). And it also points to the Dangerous Speech Project, by Susan Benesch.  The concept is broader that hate speech and deals with conditions in particular countries or regions or special circumstances.  The site considers Donald Trump's calling migrants "invaders" as dangerous.   For example, my own speech, in that incident when I was a substitute teacher (July 27, 2007) might have been viewed as “dangerous” but was not “hate”.
But Milo Yiannopoulos has used the term “Dangerous” in a different context, to call out what he sees as hypocrisy and hyper identity politics (or intersectionality) on the political left. It is also the name of his book and publishing company (Miami), and site.

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