San Francisco, USA:
Facebook on Wednesday unveiled new defenses against online attacks on journalists, activists and celebrities as the social media company fights the crisis against the potential harm of its sites.
The company has faced criticism and a Senate panel investigation since a whistleblower was leaked in a domestic study that found Facebook and its sites detrimental to the mental health of young people.
Francis Hogan, a former employee of the company, accused the leading social network of putting profits ahead of the safety of its users.
Facebook security chief Antigone Davis announced the new security, “We will not allow bullying and harassment on our platform, but when that happens, we will act.”
Facebook has expanded the range of prohibited “attacks” on public persons, including the range of sexually explicit or derogatory images of their bodies.
Davis, who defended the company’s work at an earlier hearing by lawmakers, said “such attacks could arm a public figure.”
Facebook also added journalists and human rights defenders to the list of people who are considered public because of their work.
The new policies include tracing concerted efforts to use multiple accounts to harass or intimidate people who are considered high-risk in the real world, such as government dissidents and victims of violent tragedies.
Davis will begin removing state-linked and “hostile networks” in the Facebook social network that will work together to “harass or calm people” over differences.
“We remove content that violates our policies and disables the accounts of individuals who repeatedly violate our rules,” he wrote.
Documents leaked by Hougen, which formed the basis of a series of Wall Street Journal stories, have provoked one of Facebook’s most serious crises.
In his testimony, he noted the dangers that social media sites’ sites are particularly vulnerable to political separatism and self-dissatisfaction among young people.
He did not end up calling on the authorities to regulate the network, which is home to nearly three billion people daily around the world.
European lawmakers have summoned Houjan for questioning, and he is scheduled to meet with Facebook’s oversight committee, which is responsible for evaluating the network’s content policies.
The leaked documents and Hogan’s testimony provoked a sharp pushback from Facebook, but did not publicly say whether CEO Mark Zuckerberg would accept the Senate committee’s call to answer their questions.
(Except for the title, this story was not edited by NDTV staff and published from an integrated feed.)