Facebook removed over 22 million posts for hate speech in the second quarter


Facebook removed 22.5 million posts for containing hate speech in the second quarter, the company announced Tuesday.

That figure is a marked increase from the 9.6 million pieces the platform removed in the first quarter.

Facebook credited the uptick in removals to improvements in detection technology in its sixth Community Standards Enforcement Report.

The rate at which Facebook identified hateful content before users flagged it also increased to 94.5 percent from just under 89 percent in the first quarter.

On Instagram, the platform removed 3.3 million pieces of hateful content, up from 808,000 in the previous three months.

The increase in removals come as Facebook faces escalating pressure over its handling of hate content on the platform.

Several civil rights groups earlier this year launched an ad boycott campaign called “Stop Hate for Profit,” asking companies to pull their ad dollars from Facebook for the month of July until action was taken on those issues. Hundreds of businesses joined the campaign, with many extending the pause beyond July.

Facebook also released an independent audit in July which slammed the platform’s progress on civil rights issues, while the platform’s handling of posts by President Trump has been criticized in particular.

CEO Mark Zuckerberg has defended a generally hands-off approach to political speech, arguing that tech companies should not be arbiters of truth.

Trump has posed issues for that leniency, with Zuckerberg being criticized both internally and externally for leaving up posts like the one where Trump said “when the looting shoots, the shooting starts” in response to protests in Minneapolis over the police killing of George Floyd.  

Tags Donald Trump Mark Zuckerberg

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