Facebook says it fell short by failing to stop hate and violence in Myanmar. Along with a human rights report commissioned by the company and released Monday, Facebook admits that it didn't do enough to quash hate speech and potentially questionable content that went on to incite real world violence in Myanmar.
A Reuters special report in August also found that Facebook had not listened to warnings about social media posts that fueled attacks on minority groups like the Rohingya. In 2017, the UN says over 700,000 Rohingyan Muslims were pushed into neighboring Bangladesh after a crackdown by the Myanmar army. Reuters' Paresh Dave has been following Facebook's reaction.
>> This report really underscores for Facebook from an independent decessor that they were wrong in their actions. For its part, Facebook says it's already taking some of these corrective actions and has made progress.>> The report itself warned Facebook it needed to be ready for a possible onslaught of similar misinformation on its platforms during Myanmar's 2020 elections.
Facebook says, it now has 99 Myanmar language specialists to help stomp out questionable content, but the reports says, it may need staff on the ground to engage with civil society. Though that solution could come with its own risks.>> In this case, putting staff on the ground might help them better understand how users are using their services and anticipate some of the problems.
But, the military or the government could take action against these employees, if they were on the ground in the country, if Facebook took any actions that were seen as a threat to that ruling establishment.>> Facebook claims that last quarter, it took action on over 60,000 pieces of content globally.
Monday's report estimates that Myanmar has around 20 million Facebook users.