Facebook tightens rules on who can go live on its platform following New Zealand attack

A few days ago, Facebook banned white nationalist and separatist speech from its platform in response to the New Zealand terrorist attacks that killed 50 people earlier this month. Shortly thereafter, New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern called for more efforts beyond restricting hate content on the internet.

Today, Facebook's Chief Operating Officer Sheryl Sandberg announced that the social media giant is taking a number of steps to further address the Christchurch shootings in addition to supporting the New Zealand community. One of those measures is limiting who can go live on its service based on certain criteria such as prior Community Standard violations. Facebook's capability to moderate its Live feature came under fire after the terrorist live-streamed the mass shootings at two mosques in New Zealand via the platform.

Sandberg said the company is also putting more resources into developing technology that could "identify edited versions of violent videos and images and prevent people from re-sharing these versions." She said Facebook detected more than 900 different videos containing portions of the Christchurch attack footage. Earlier last week, the social networking site also announced that it took down 1.5 million videos of the attack worldwide in the first 24 hours after the incident.

Additionally, Facebook is beefing up efforts to curb hate speech on the platform. The company is leveraging its existing artificial intelligence system to block several hate groups in Australia and New Zealand including the Lads Society, the United Patriots Front, the Antipodean Resistance, and National Front New Zealand. Those who will express support for these groups will also be removed from the site.

In addition, Facebook is extending support to four well-being and mental health organizations in the country as well as collaborating with its youth partner to develop peer support and resilience programs. It will also cooperate with the New Zealand government in developing models for regulating online services across a wide variety of areas including content moderation, elections, privacy, and data portability.

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