Censorship continues – Meta restricts the use of another word

Censorship continues – Meta restricts the use of another word
Censorship continues – Meta restricts the use of another word

A campaign against Facebook’s censorship of pro-Palestinian content. (Photo: File)

From the Palestine Chronicle editorial board

Meta Platforms announced on Tuesday that it would restrict the use of the term “Zionists” in reference to Israelis.

The company explained in a blog post that it will specifically target content that attacks “Zionists,” even if it is not clearly about the political movement.

According to Meta, the word “Zionist” has “multiple levels of meaning due to its origin and current usage and can also depend heavily on the context.”

The post explains that, according to Meta, the term is used as a “proxy term for Jews and Israelis in relation to certain types of hate attacks” based on their “research, engagement and investigations on the platform.”

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British newspaper The Guardian quoted digital rights activist and social entrepreneur Nadim Nashif as saying: “Shadow banning is just one of many methods we have seen used to silence and censor Palestinian content over the past week.”

Instagram users have accused the platform of censoring posts supporting Palestine, raising further concerns about content moderation.

The policy update reportedly comes after consultations with 145 stakeholders from civil society and academia around the world and against the backdrop of the Israeli genocide in the Gaza Strip.

The social media giant has long been criticized for its handling of Palestine-related content.

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This criticism has intensified since the war began, with human rights groups accusing Meta of suppressing pro-Palestinian content on Facebook and Instagram.

“Meta’s content moderation policies and systems have increasingly silenced voices in support of Palestine on Instagram and Facebook amid hostilities between Israeli forces and Palestinian armed groups,” Human Rights Watch said. specified in a report last December.

“Human Rights Watch identified six main patterns of censorship, each of which recurs in at least 100 cases,” the report continues. The patterns include “removal of content, suspension or deletion of accounts, inability to engage with content, inability to follow or tag accounts, restrictions on using features such as Instagram/Facebook Live, and ‘shadow banning,’ a term that describes a significant reduction in the visibility of a person’s posts, stories, or accounts without notification.”

(The Palestine Chronicle)