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20 State Attorneys General call on Facebook to censor more

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Attorneys General from 20 different states have sent a letter urging Facebook to do a better job at censoring content. They also said the social media giant should do more to help users who are victims of online abuse.

“We, the undersigned State Attorneys General, write to request that you take additional steps to prevent Facebook from being used to spread disinformation and hate and to facilitate discrimination. We also ask that you take more steps to provide redress for users who fall victim to intimidation and harassment, including violence and digital abuse,” reads the first paragraph of the letter.

We obtained a copy of the letter for you here.

The letter was written by the Attorneys General of New Jersey, Illinois, and District of Columbia, and addressed to CEO Mark Zuckerberg and COO Sheryl Sandberg. It was cos-signed by 17 other democrat AGs from states such as New York, California, Pennsylvania, Maryland, and Virginia.

In the letter, the AGs said that they often encounter victims of online bullying on Facebook. And while they appreciate that the social platform occasionally takes action, the victims say that they find the process ineffective.

“As part of our responsibilities to our communities, Attorneys General have helped residents navigate Facebook’s processes for victims to address abuse on its platform. While Facebook has—on occasion—taken action to address violations of its terms of service in cases where we have helped elevate our constituents’ concerns, we know that everyday users of Facebook can find the process slow, frustrating, and ineffective. Thus, we write to highlight positive steps that Facebook can take to strengthen its policies and practices.”

The letter proceeds to highlight seven steps they think Facebook should take to better police content to avoid online abuse. They recommended things such as aggressive enforcement of “hate speech” policies, third-party enforcement and auditing of hate speech, and real-time assistance for users to report harassment.

The letter is the latest of a series of attacks against Facebook and Zuckerberg. Activists groups, advertisers, and even its own employees have attacked the company for what they think is its lax enforcement of disinformation and harassment policies.

While you may be wondering how Facebook could possibly do any more with the amount of censorship it has been doing lately, according to the AGs in the letter, Facebook is not doing enough.

If you’re tired of censorship and surveillance, subscribe to Reclaim The Net.

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