Facebook is cracking down on live-streaming with bans for rule breakers

15 May, 2019, 19:43 | Author: Wade Massey
  • Jacinda Ardern,PM Jacinda Ardern,New Zealand

Before the Christchurch attack, she said, governments took a "traditional approach to terrorism that would not necessarily have picked up the form of terrorism that New Zealand experienced on the 15th of March, and that was white supremacy". "New Zealand had its experience, and changed its laws", she said.

Now Ardern is turning her efforts toward another factor in the violence that day: the social media platforms on which the gunman live-streamed his attack. Therefore, if a user posted content leading to a terrorist website, they'd be banned from livestreaming.

On Tuesday night, Facebook announced that it would be taking steps to try to prevent such videos from reaching its platform, and work to find effective ways to take them down if they are posted.

Now, users who violate Facebook's "most serious policies" - such as sharing a link to statements from a known terrorist group - would be banned from broadcasting live videos on the platform for set periods of time.

It plans to extend other restrictions in the coming weeks, including preventing the same people from creating ads on Facebook.

Facebook said it's also investing $7.5 million in new research partnerships to improve image and video analysis technology aimed at finding content manipulated through editing to avoid detection by its automated systems - a problem the company encountered following the Christchurch shooting. Facebook, Google and Twitter struggled to swiftly take down copies of the violent video as fast as it spread on the web, prompting an global backlash from regulators who felt malicious actors had evaded Silicon Valley's censors too easily.

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Ardern also said prior to the ban, New Zealand had "pretty permissive gun legislation", and while she thinks guns are necessary in some instances, she felt the laws went too far.

The New York Times reports the United States is not among the expected signers of the non-binding pledge, as officials are reportedly concerned about the free speech implications of the pledge. "But that right does not include the freedom to broadcast mass murder".

"The pledge does not contain enforcement or regulatory measures". "We will be seeking other companies, other countries, to sign up in the aftermath".

US officials said they stand "with the worldwide community in condemning terrorist and violent extremist content online", and support the goals of the Christchurch document.

"Facebook's decision to put limits on livestreaming is a good first step to restrict the application being used as a tool for terrorists, and shows the Christchurch Call is being acted on", she said in an email from her spokesman.

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