It's not easy to convince me that a class action by Facebook moderators (censors) isn't just a case of some pure BS meant to extract money from a company that just happens to have lots of cash to spare.
But according to Facebook moderators (human censors, to be clear) they're basically on a par with war veterans/survivors.
This is not to say that interacting with billions of other people (such is Facebook's audience) might not legitimately give anybody disturbing nightmares, anxiety attacks, and “grace” their minds with intrusive imagery – some of the prime ways your old, actual PTSD will manifest.)
But there seem to be other ways, too – like this one:
“People really started to believe these posts they were supposed to be moderating,” said “Chloe” – a made-up name The Verge has used for its stories.
Facebook seems to have done well, though: it will only have to pay out $52 million in settlements to thousands of “moderators” who claim having developed PTSD from reviewing Facebook content.
And if there is something a trillion-dollar tech company like Facebook can do about any of this now – like, say, pay out an average “content moderator turned conspiracy theorist” $1,000 – or more just to keep these former third-party employees out of its hair – of course it will.
After all, these “moderators” are actual people, with lives, feelings, and depending on where you stand, even souls, who were initially hired to complement Facebook's inadequate “smart” algorithmic solutions that are meant to automatically weed out anything unwanted by the platform, as it tried to make its primary ad business as appealing as ever – and then, a while later, navigate the political minefield that is the US politics.
Turns out, though – algorithms are still as smart, or as stupid, as the people who write them. So we still need “real people.”
“I'm fucked up, man,” Facebook moderator Randy (fake name/NDA reasons) told The Verge.