Disgruntled Facebook Employee Leaks Censorship Guidelines.


The weird and wonderful world of Facebook’s censorship guidelines has been laid bare for all to see by a disgruntled ex-employee.

A document released by outsourcing company oDesk to the Gawker website reveals an interesting glimpse into the meticulous approach the social media giant takes in deciding which content is appropriate for its site.

The 13-page “Abuse Standards Violations” manual was used by workers to police posts and images on Facebook, and appears to take a more liberal approach to gore, while nudity is a big no-no.

The hit-list included: images of breastfeeding if nipples are exposed, images of drunk or unconscious people, people “using the bathroom”, racial comments, anyone who shows “approval, delight, involvement etc. in animal or human torture”, obvious sexual activity and “sexual fetishes in any form”, even if “naked parts” are hidden, reported the Guardian.

More surprisingly, perhaps, was the list of images which were allowed. Images of bodily fluids – except semen – are acceptable provided no human is also in the picture, “deep flesh wounds” and “crushed heads, limbs” are also acceptable “as long as no insides are showing”, and images of people using marijuana are OK, too.

In response to the leak, a Facebook spokesperson said: “In an effort to quickly and efficiently process the millions of reports we receive every day, we have found it helpful to contract third parties to provide precursory classification of a small proportion of reported content.

“These contractors are subject to rigorous quality controls and we have implemented several layers of safeguards to protect the data of those using our service. Additionally, no user information beyond the content in question and the source of the report is shared. We have, and will continue, to escalate the most serious reports internally, and all decisions made by contractors are subject to extensive audits.

“We are constantly improving our processes and review our contractors on an ongoing basis. This document provides a snapshot in time of our standards with regards to one of those contractors.”

The leak came from 21-year-old oDesk employee, Amine Derkaoui, who said he was paid only $1 (63p) per hour to trawl through reported images and content and decide if they should be removed from the site.  Source: L. Boyd Medina for bigmouthmedia

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Posted on February 22, 2012, in Employee Engagement, Employee Relations and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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