A Facebook civil rights audit could have unintended consequences

As a longtime listener of her show, I was delighted to speak with Terry Gross on today’s edition of Fresh Air. The subject was my recent pieces on Facebook content moderators. Give it a listen!

By May of 2018, Facebook had received sustained criticism that the platform consistently enabled civil rights abuses. (Much of the criticism came after articles published by ProPublica demonstrating various ways that Facebook’s advertising platform could promote discrimination.) In response, the company announced that it had commissioned an independent civil rights audit — an effort to understand how Facebook promotes discrimination, and to develop recommendations for improvement.

In December, Facebook posted its first update about the audit,…

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