Facebook is ‘exploring restrictions’ for live video after Christchurch attack

Earlier, the New Zealand Herald published a letter from Facebook's Chief Operating Officer, Sheryl Sandberg, in which he talked about how the company is addressing the deadly terrorist attack in Christchurch two weeks ago. In the letter, she presents three steps that the company is taking, including that it is "exploring restrictions" for live videos.

She described the attack as "an act of sheer evil," and that the company is "committed to reviewing what happened," and that it is working with the country's authorities. After the attack, Facebook says that it eliminated 1.5 million videos of the attack around the world, with 1.2 blocked "in the upload". In his letter, Sandberg says that while Facebook moved quickly to eliminate the video and account of the perpetrator, the company could do more, and presented three steps it will take. We communicate with Facebook to clarify the letter, and we will update this publication if we receive a response.

The first step is that Facebook is "exploring the restrictions on who can go to live based on factors such as previous violations of community standards", and that the company is putting more resources into systems that can identify videos violent, even if they are edited He noted that they have found more than 900 variations of the attack video.

The second step is to take "even stronger steps to eliminate hatred on our platforms." Earlier this week, Facebook announced that it was banning the nationalist and white separatist content of the site, and that it would redirect people seeking such content to resources. That helps people leaving hate organizations. Sandberg says that since then the company has removed a number of groups from these platforms for these organizations, and it will also eliminate the praise from those groups.

The final step that Sandberg describes is that the company is supporting "four local mental health and well-being organizations" in New Zealand and reiterated that the company is "ready to work with a commission designed to examine how it works online " Sites and social networking platforms played a role in the attack.

Sandberg's letter does not provide details about what "exploring the restrictions" means in the live video, although there seem to be some caveats, as if a person had previously violated the community standards of the site. Earlier this month, the author of the attacks filmed his attacks in two mosques and uploaded them to Facebook, YouTube, Twitter and Instagram with the aim of making them go viral. While the attack was initially seen by less than 200 people, technology companies have rushed to keep the videos from spreading. Facebook has faced problems with people who broadcast violent videos, such as in 2017, when a Cleveland uploaded images of a murder to its profile page, where it remained for several hours.

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