The most recent BNN news mentions the changes Meta will soon make to its VIP content program.
On Friday, Meta, the parent company of Facebook, announced changes to its “cross-check” moderation solution. It has faced criticism for giving preferential treatment to VIPs by subjecting their posts to different review processes than those of regular users. However, Meta did not implement all of the suggestions made by its own Oversight Board, such as publicly identifying which high-profile accounts are eligible for the program.
In November 2021, the cross-check program faced criticism following a report by the Wall Street Journal, which revealed that the system provided certain VIP users, including politicians, celebrities, journalists, and Meta’s business partners, such as advertisers, with special treatment. The report suggested that these users were shielded from the company’s regular content moderation process, allowing them to post content that violated the rules without being penalized.
Meta’s viewpoint on the cross-check program
According to the Journal, by 2020, the cross-check program would have expanded to include 5.8 million users. Meta’s Oversight Board stated that Facebook had not provided them with essential information about the system after the report was released. Meta acknowledged that the criticism of the system was valid but argued that cross-checking was developed to enhance the precision of moderation on content that may need much clarity.
In December, Meta’s Oversight Board criticized the cross-check program for being established to “address business interests” and warned that it could potentially harm regular users. The board, which operates independently of Meta despite being funded by the company, called on Meta to significantly enhance transparency regarding the cross-check system and its operations.
Recently, Meta announced that it would adopt some or all of the more than two dozen recommendations made by the Oversight Board for enhancing the program.
The changes Meta may add sooner
Meta has decided to make several changes. It includes differentiating between accounts with a better review program for business and human rights. It shall also provide data to the Oversight Board in the company’s transparency center. The company also plans to improve its process for temporarily removing or hiding potentially harmful content while it undergoes further review. Additionally, Meta stated that it will work to ensure that cross-check content reviewers possess the necessary language and regional expertise, when feasible.
However, the company has decided not to implement some recommendations, such as publicly marking the pages of state actors, political candidates, business partners, media figures, and other public figures included in the cross-check program. Meta explained that such public markers could make these accounts vulnerable to malicious actors.
Meta further shared the details of its policy statement, stating that its focus is to uphold transparency with the public and the Oversight Board. The team shall work as per commitments made concerning the cross-check program.
According to a tweet by the Oversight Board on Friday, the proposed changes to the cross-check program by Meta “have the potential to make Meta’s approach to error prevention more equitable, trustworthy, and valid, addressing the primary criticisms” outlined in its December policy recommendation.
With this BNN news spreading across the world, users are hoping for some better changes that Meta may finally add to its cross-check program.