Facebook ramps up moderation around Derek Chauvin trial, will delete posts mocking George Floyd’s death

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Facebook says it’s taking further moderation measures around the trial of Derek Chauvin, the previous police officer accused of murdering Minneapolis man George Floyd final 12 months. As a verdict within the trial approaches, Facebook has designated Minneapolis a “high-risk location” the place it will search and take away calls to convey weapons to occasions. It will additionally take away content material that “praises, celebrates, or mocks George Floyd’s death.”

Facebook content material moderation VP Monika Bickert outlined preparations for a verdict in a weblog submit this morning. “We want to strike the right balance between allowing people to speak about the trial and what the verdict means, while still doing our part to protect everyone’s safety,” Bickert writes. Users can “discuss, critique, and criticize the trial and the attorneys involved,” however Facebook will take away content material that violates its insurance policies, and it “may also limit the spread of content that our systems predict is likely to violate our Community Standards.” And it will “remove events organized in temporary, high-risk locations that contain calls to bring arms.”

The firm will delete “severe” assaults on Chauvin, though Facebook considers the previous officer a public determine for “voluntarily placing himself in the public eye” — versus Floyd, who’s granted a better normal of safety.

Much of Bickert’s submit outlines steps Facebook is meant to take with all content material. But it signifies that Facebook could possibly be significantly vigilant in, as an illustration, eradicating incendiary occasion pages around Minneapolis. Last 12 months, the corporate was criticized for not eradicating a self-proclaimed militia’s “call to arms” in Kenosha, Wisconsin, till a deadly capturing occurred through the occasion.

Facebook made an analogous announcement final month around the mass capturing in Atlanta, Georgia, when it banned any posts that celebrated the assault or the alleged killer. However, Chauvin’s trial is a extra doubtlessly risky state of affairs, particularly as footage of police violence — just like the shooting of 13-year-old Adam Toledo — has unfold on social media throughout it. Facebook says that “given the risk of violence following the announcement of the verdict, regardless of what it is, we remain in close contact with local, state and federal law enforcement” after the decision.

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