A wave of uneven, wave again. Facebook, which was still trying to remove fake news posts related to the outbreak, was caught up in a vortex of whether it was time to remove President Trump’s controversial posts. In late May, George Floyd, an unarmed black man, was killed in an accident under the control of Minneapolis police.
According to video taken by witnesses, a local police officer had knelt on Floyd’s neck for more than eight minutes before his death. Freud’s death then sparked widespread and sustained protests in several states across the country and quickly turned violent.
Apple retail stores were the number one target of looters during weekend protests, according to previous reports.
As things got out of hand, President Trump posted on his social media platform:
“I can’t turn a blind eye to the turmoil in Minneapolis. Either your mayor, Jacob Frey, acted to restore order to the city, or I sent the National Guard to solve the problem… I’ve spoken to the governor and told him the army is on standby… If you dare to rob, you dare to shoot. “
Trump’s controversial post
Twitter tagged the president’s controversial post. But Facebook refused to take action.
On Tuesday, in a surging online video conference with all employees, Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive, tried to clarify again why he had made the decision. He said that while he also strongly considered the content of the post “disgusting”, after team analysis and his own careful consideration, Mr. Trump’s post did not violate the platform’s policy of inciting violent speech, and after consulting with experts and drawing on history, he found that “the quote ‘dare to rob, shoot’ is clearly about aggressive policing – and even excessive law and order maintenance – but it’s not a past story that can be interpreted as sending a message to civilian supporters (“blowing a dog whistle” to “incite them to act in a way”). “
But the company’s employees didn’t think so, and even were extremely disappointed by Zuckerberg’s indifference and stubbornness in the matter.
More than 5,500 employees protest: History won’t treat us well
More than 5,500 employees reportedly asked Zuckerberg to take action on the president’s controversial post.
As facebook’s posts on the platform are currently available for either retention or direct deletion, there are no other options. As a result, employees have suggested that controversial posts can be at least flagged.
Although Zuckerberg later said, “I know a lot of you think we should mark the president’s post last week.” We will review policies related to discussions and threats of use of force by states to see if there is any need to be revised and improved. In addition to deleting/not deleting posts, we look for potential lying other ways to better address non-compliance or partial violations,” but such a response apparently failed to calm employee anger.
Most of the 5,500 employees who took part in the protest wanted Zuckerberg to change the platform policy, according to internal documents learned bymedia. “Fact-checking and the removal of hate speech should also apply to politicians,” they wrote. We made this request before Zuckerberg’s virtual full-time conference. “
In addition, given the low percentage of people of color at the company’s senior management, employees have questioned whether Zuckerberg is really delivering on his promise of team diversity. Only 4% of Facebook employees are African-American, compared with 3% of the company’s senior management.
Maxine Williams is Facebook’s director of diversity and the highest-ranking African-American on Facebook. Williams was also the only non-white employee involved in the decision-making process when the company decided whether to delete the Trump post.
Internal message boards also show that a growing number of employees are suspecting that the company has an “abnormal relationship” with President Trump. They resent edify the company’s failure to act on the president’s posts, even if they violate platform standards that prohibit hate speech and incitement to violence; they are even more dissatisfied with Zuckerberg’s decision to explain his decision in an interview with Fox News (conservative media) instead of refusing to tag or delete Trump’s posts.
After social media such as Twitter and Snap took action on Trump’s controversial posts, employees renewed their call for Facebook executives to reconsider how to handle Trump’s “rob and shoot” posts and posts that contain edified statements about postal ballots.
“Recently, Facebook’s decision not to take any action on posts that incite violence has ignored other options to keep our community safe,” seven engineers responsible for maintaining the React code base that supports the Facebook app’s operation said in a joint statement on Twitter. We ask facebook leadership to take immediate action (#TakeAction). “
Ryan Freitas, according to Twitter, is the product design director for NewsFeed. He wrote: “Mark did something wrong. I will do my best to change his mind. Mr Freitas also said he had mobilized “more than 50 like-minded people” to lobby for internal change.
“I would say that the distortions are very uncomfortable at the moment,” one employee told reporters by email. If we don’t stand this test, history won’t treat us well. “
Words have been unable to express the grievances and disappointments of Facebook employees. So far, at least three employees have chosen to resign in protest.
Timothy Awani interview
Timothy Arwani: Full of lies
On Monday, Timothy Aveni, a 22-year-old former Facebook employee, announced his resignation on his Facebook page.
Mr. Awani said in an interview that Mr. Mark’s inaction was proof that the 36-year-old billionaire had abandoned one of his key principles: banning the spread of violence on Facebook. “Mark always tells us over and over again that the platform has zero tolerance for violent content, even if it comes from the president of the United States. “
But, “he proved to us on Friday that it was all lies,” Arwani wrote on Facebook.
In testimony to Congress last October, Zuckerberg promised that he would not tolerate any calls for violence. “Anyone, including a politician, who publishes anything that could lead to or call for violence or may cause bodily harm … is not the result of any thing,” he said. We’ll delete it as soon as we find it. “
Mr. Awani said Mr. Trump’s posts – “if you dare to rob, dare to shoot” – were suspected of inciting violence. “I don’t think (Zuckerberg’s) decision to delete a post is groundless,” he said in an interview. He must have made the decision himself and then tried to find a reason for it, which was not difficult for him. But this is not the right way to deal with it. “
During college, Awani took a two-time internship with Facebook. After graduation, he went straight to Facebook to work as a full-time software engineer.
At first, he was passionate about his work on Facebook. “I think Facebook is a real positive force for the world in many ways,” he said. Facebook connects with all of humanity in amazing ways, and every day we’re witnessing the truly positive impact Facebook has on people around the world. “
His entry into Facebook in 2019 comes as the company faces a series of crisis of confidence. Avani said he could understand the situation: “Facebook is not perfect. Maybe I shouldn’t be here, but I’m willing to accept criticism. However, I really believe that Facebook has a really positive impact on the world, and I want to be a part of it. “
But gradually, Mr. Awani found that Facebook had a lot of problems with fact-checking. From time to time, He says, Mr. Zuckerberg has bowed to pressure from conservatives to abandon his principles. Last week, Facebook and Zuckerberg’s inaction on Mr. Trump’s posts was the last straw that prompted Mr. Awani to leave Facebook.
He said resigning was an “extreme choice.”
“I think it’s the right thing for most people, including a lot of my colleagues, to stay in the company and try to do the right thing. And I just feel like I’m too tired to hold on. “
It is clear, however, that it is not just Mr Awani who has made the extreme choice.
Also last Monday, another former Facebook employee, Owen Anderson, announced his resignation on Twitter. “I am pleased to announce that after today, I am no longer a Facebook employee… I’m glad I’ll never have to support values and policies that I don’t agree with again. “
Anonymous Resignation Employee: Deeply ashamed to work here
On Friday, it was reported that a third former Facebook employee had chosen to resign in protest at the company’s decision on The Trump post. Unlike the first two white employees who resigned, the former employee, who did not want to be named, said he was not African-American but belonged to a group of people of color. He announced his resignation in the WhatsApp insider group.
“I’m deeply ashamed of working for a company like this, just because it’s a politician, and Facebook has allowed such a racist post to go on the platform,” the resignation employee shouted directly to Zuckerberg, “Your own black employee asks you to respond meaningfully, but what about you?” Either self-defense or escape. You let all of us, the very few people of color in your company, be disappointed. Your refusal to speak out against violence against black people is chilling. “
In his resignation letter, the former employee shouted out to many of the Facebook employees who took part in the protest:
“I’m resigning to show you and Sheryl Sandberg’s protest, and it’s shocking that you’re extremely unsympathetic. You acknowledge that Trump’s racist blog posts not only incite further violence against blacks, but also violate Facebook’s community standards. I’m ashamed to work for a company like this because Facebook has bowed its head to a very racist blog post, just because it came from a politician. “
I feel that, as all those who can think critically today think, I live in a dystopian novel whose plot is getting darker and darker, page by page. What is the right choice (insinuating: issuing a clear warning or withdrawing a racist blog post) is obvious, but I have to stress that it is appalling.
I am here to quote your point of view through the leaked minutes of the meeting:
In fact, I think the video of the murder was posted on Facebook because our service gives people a voice, and that’s already had a huge impact.
I just want to say that I hope people don’t just look at the moral impact of what we’re doing from a hurt-relief perspective. Of course, harm reduction is also an important part of what we have to do.
I’m not ignoring that, we’re spending a lot of resources on this, thousands of people are working on that goal, and we’re spending billions of dollars on it every year.
But we also want to give people an unprecedented way to understand and discuss events so that painful voices can be heard. I think it’s also important, and I think that’s what I think about all these things.
Are we comparing George Floyd’s Facebook video to Trump’s hate speech? Are we so sound-blind today that we don’t understand the difference between freedom of speech and racial prejudice? Isn’t “not hurting the real world” our standard? Does Trump really need a platform to express his racist views? You insist that this is “not” a signal to legitimize violence against blacks. I quote your following points for reference:
So we looked at the history of “daring to rob, dare to shoot”, and then we find that this is undoubtedly a disturbing historical rhetoric and quote, whether or not involving inciting supporters to commit acts of violence. Then, after reading all the content and communicating with different people, the quote clearly involved radical policing – and even excessive policing – but no past history could be interpreted as sending a swagon (“blowing a whistle” to civilian supporters) and inciting them to defend justice with violence.
We all know that it uses the language of apartheidists. Just because you don’t believe it’s a signal that violence is exacerbated (please tell us how you studied this?). Do you collect data on how this term is interpreted? ) Can you really look the black man in the eye and tell them they shouldn’t be understood like this? In such a crisis-ridden political environment, in an election year, violence against blacks has been so rampant that you really want to hide behind the claim that Facebook is still just a platform for communication? Hasn’t it tried to change the behaviour of two generations from the start?
Nothing, especially language, is forever neutral.
Black people all over America are frightened. Your own black employees ask you to respond meaningfully, but what about you? Either self-defense or escape. I broke down when I saw a black friend and colleague suffering from the long struggle of black people. What would you do if you had a chance to make a change (I mean real change – say it out loud – and not just spend money to solve it) would you do? There’s nothing. You let all of us, the very few people of color in your company, be disappointed. Your refusal to speak out against violence against black people is chilling.
I’m not as good at ignoring “the moral impact of what we do” as you are, so I chose to leave Facebook in protest. I can’t give my time and intelligence to a business where leaders are so timid. “