Facebook says it’s taking new steps to stop hate speech in Sri Lanka and Myanmar

While Facebook addresses global criticism for the role of its platform in the promotion of violence, the company says it is taking new steps to stop the spread of hate. In a blog post published yesterday, the company noted the action recently taken in two countries: Sri Lanka and Myanmar, both affected by the conflict fueled by social networks.

In Sri Lanka, where Facebook posts have spread violence against Muslims, the company says it limits the amount of messages that users can forward , a change that the company made previously. Made to WhatsApp amid similar concerns. The number of threads that can be forwarded at a time is set to five in the country.

The company said it is also focusing on the "content limit," which may be sensational but does not directly violate the rules of the platform. In Myanmar, where the minority Rohingya population is being persecuted, the company said it would reduce the distribution of all the content of people who show "a pattern" of violating Facebook's community standards.

The company says that in the meantime it will continue to prohibit people who directly promote violence. "Reducing the distribution of content is, however, another lever that we can pull to combat the spread of hate content and activity," the company said in its publication.

The handling of violence by Facebook in countries like Myanmar has been widely analyzed, and advocates say that their efforts "have not come close enough." After an independent assessment on Myanmar published last year, Facebook concluded that "it can and should do more".

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