Facebook Sued by Muslim Civil Rights Group Over Hate Speech

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Facebook, the lawsuit alleges, has been repeatedly alerted to hate speech and calls to violence on its platform and has done nothing or very little.

Facebook Sued by Muslim Civil Rights Group Over Hate Speech

A civil rights group is suing Facebook and its executives, pronouncing CEO Mark Zuckerberg made “false and deceptive” statements to Congress when he said the large social network eliminates hate speech and other cloth that violates its policies.

The lawsuit, filed via Muslim Advocates in Washington, DC, Superior Court on Thursday, claims Zuckerberg and different senior executives “have engaged in a coordinated campaign to convince the public, elected representatives, federal officials, and non-income leaders within the country’s capital that Facebook is a safe product.”

Facebook, the lawsuit alleges, has been time and again alerted to hate speech and calls to violence on its platform and performed nothing or very little. Making fake and misleading statements approximately disposing of hateful and harmful content material violates the District of Columbia’s customer-safety regulation and its bar on fraud, the lawsuit says.

“Every day, ordinary people are bombarded with harmful content in violation of Facebook’s own rules on hate speech, bullying, harassment, dangerous agencies, and violence,” the lawsuit says. “Hateful, anti-Muslim attacks are specially pervasive on Facebook.”

In a assertion, Facebook said it does no longer allow hate speech on its platform and said it frequently works with “experts, non-earnings, and stakeholders to assist make certain Facebook is a safe location for every body, recognising anti-Muslim rhetoric can take extraordinary paperwork.

The corporation primarily based in Menlo Park, California, said it has invested in artificial intelligence technologies aimed at eliminating hate speech and proactively detects ninety seven percent of what it eliminates.

Facebook declined to comment past the declaration, which did not cope with the lawsuit’s allegations that it has not removed hate speech and anti-Muslim networks from its platform even after it was notified of their life.

For example, the lawsuit cites studies via Elon University professor Megan Squire, who posted research approximately anti-Muslim companies on Facebook and alerted the corporation. According to the lawsuit, Facebook did now not dispose of the corporations — but it did alternate how outside lecturers can get right of entry to its platform so that the type of research Squire did would be “impossible aside from if performed via Facebook employees.”

Facebook’s hate speech coverage prohibits focused on someone or group with “dehumanising speech or imagery,” requires violence, references to subhumanity and inferiority in addition to generalisations that nation inferiority. The coverage applies to assaults on the idea of race, religion, countrywide starting place, incapacity, spiritual affiliation, caste, sexual orientation, sex, gender identity, and critical disease.

But in a single example from April 25, 2018, Squire said to Facebook a set referred to as “Purge Worldwide,” in step with the lawsuit. The organization’s description reads: “This is an anti Islamic group A Place to percentage records about what is going on to your a part of the world.”

Facebook responded that it’d no longer cast off the organization or the content material. The lawsuit cites different examples of corporations with names like “Death to Murdering Islamic Muslim Cult Members” and “Filth of Islam” that Facebook did no longer do away with notwithstanding being notified, despite the fact that Facebook policy prohibits “reference or evaluation to filth” on the premise of religion. In the latter case Facebook did do away with some posts from the institution, however no longer the organization itself.

The lawsuit additionally cites an exception Facebook made to its policy for former President Donald Trump, for whom Facebook made an exception to its regulations when he posted as a candidate in 2016 about banning all Muslims from entering the United States.

Zuckerberg and other social media executives have time and again testified before Congress about how they combat extremism, hate and incorrect information on their platforms. Zuckerberg advised the House Energy and Commerce Committee that the problem is “nuanced.”

“Any device could make errors” in moderating harmful material, he said.

The plaintiffs searching for a jury trial and damages of $1,500 (more or less Rs. 1.12 lakhs) according to violation.

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