Several people on our feed have complained that articles they’ve shared about the coronavirus have been marked as SPAM by the Facebook censorship machine. Turns out, it’s a systematic purge of valuable information.
According to Business Insider:
Facebook is blocking users from posting some legitimate news articles about the novel coronavirus in what appears to be a bug in its spam filters.
On Tuesday, multiple Facebook users reported on Twitter that they found themselves unable to post articles from certain news outlets including Business Insider, BuzzFeed, The Atlantic, and The Times of Israel. It’s not clear exactly what had gone wrong, and Facebook did not respond to a request for comment.
In the face of the mounting COVID-19 pandemic, Facebook has sent many of its content moderators home, saying it will rely more on automated software instead. Alex Stamos, an outspoken former Facebook security executive, speculated that this shift might be to blame.
The article goes on to say:
“It looks like an anti-spam rule at FB is going haywire,” he wrote on Twitter. “Facebook sent home content moderators yesterday, who generally can’t WFH” — work from home — “due to privacy commitments the company has made. We might be seeing the start of the ML” — machine learning — “going nuts with less human oversight.”
Facebook, however, denied that the bug was related to any changes to its content-moderator workforce.