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Independent Facebook oversight board announces first members

Independent Facebook oversight board announces first members
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The independent oversight board created by Facebook to review content moderation decisions announced its first 20 members and co-chairpeople on Wednesday.

Mark ZuckerbergMark Elliot ZuckerbergAdvocacy group accuses Facebook of fueling anti-Muslim hate Texas GOP move to overhaul voting laws: What you need to know Congress must come together and protect our children on social media MORE first revealed his intentions to launch the oversight board in November 2018 amid blowback over how Facebook manages hate speech and political content.

The oversight board will have final and binding say over whether content should be allowed on, or taken down from, Facebook and Instagram.

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Facebook recruited the board's four co-chairpeople, who then led the interview and recruitment process for the rest of the board along with the social media giant and an executive search firm.

"Each of our members has chosen to participate in the board because they believe there is no single company that can solve the most challenging online content decisions today," Thomas Hughes, the oversight board's administrative director, said on a press call.

The co-chairpeople are Helle Thorning-Schmidt, a former Danish prime minister, Michael McConnell, a constitutional law professor at Stanford University, Jamal Greene, a Columbia law professor, and Catalina Botero-Marino, dean of Universidad de los Andes faculty of law.

Another 16 members of the advisory board were announced Wednesday, with as many as 20 other board members expected to be added. 

"The four Co-Chairs and 16 other Members announced today are drawn from around the world. They speak at least 29 languages and represent diverse professional, cultural, political, and religious backgrounds and viewpoints," the oversight board said in a blog post Wednesday.

"Over time we expect to grow the Board to around 40 Members. While we cannot claim to represent everyone, we are confident that our global composition will underpin, strengthen and guide our decision-making," the post read.