Facebook Oversight Board Turned on only for a short time, But the nascent project is already looking ahead.
in Conversation organized by the Carnegie Endowment on Thursday, Co-chairman of the Overseas Board and former Danish Prime Minister Helle Thoring-Schmidt, painted a more comprehensive vision for the group, which could go beyond policy decision-making for Facebook.
The board’s co-chairman said that if the project proves successful, “you are welcome to join other platforms and other technology companies and be part of the oversight that we will be able to provide.”
Thoring-Schmidt emphasized that a broader vision for such a moderation body would be good in the future, but the board’s current mission was to move away from the policy decisions being made in the “closed box” at the company.
“Until now content moderation was originally done by the last person on Facebook or Twitter, as we’ve seen – either Mark Zuckerberg or other platform directors,” Thoring-Schmidt said.
“For the first time in history, we actually have content moderation outside one of the larger social media platforms. This in itself… I do not hesitate to call it historical. “
Those comments may capture Facebook’s broader aspirations for the Oversight Board, which simply refers to Facebook as an “Oversight Board” without explicit reference to Facebook on its website.
Throughout the panel, people associated with the Oversight Board defended the project. The group has Doubt comes under criticism Beware that its origins with Facebook make real autonomy from the company impossible.
“Many people want to immediately dismiss the Overseas Board and see something new,” said Oaksize Board Head of Communications Dex Hunter-Torrick.
Hunter-Torrick, who spent four years working on the Facebook executive communications team and as a speech writer for both Mark Zuckerberg and Sheryl Sandberg, also hinted at a more expansionist approach to the board.
“This is a model that we are looking at here to see if it is an institution that can make an impact in one area of Facebook and pose content moderation challenges,” Hunter-Toric said. He said the board’s intention is to develop and develop what it learns from Facebook’s handling of moderation matters.
“As we build our body about our expertise and experience working with Facebook, I hope to have more capabilities,” said Hunter-Torrick. “We are on a journey. It’s nothing [where] We necessarily know the final destination but we want to test this model and refine it further. ‘
TechCrunch reached out to the Oversight Board to ask if the group sees its future as an external governing body for social networks beyond Facebook.
Facebook’s Oversight Board is currently facing a highly consequential case Whether to reinstate former President Donald Trump, Which was removed from Facebook after inciting a violent mob that attacked the US Capitol in early January.
Five of the group’s 20 members will evaluate the Trump case, although the board will not disclose which members evaluate which cases. Once the five reach their decision, the wider board must pass the decision in a majority vote. The board’s decision is expected within the next two months.
Legal scholar Pamela Karlan, the most prominent Trump critic on the Facebook Oversight Board Biden quit his role on the board to join the administration last week And will not be involved in the decision. The colonel testified at Trump’s first impeachment hearing, arguing that Trump’s actions constituted unreasonable crimes.
Is board Accepting comment on Trump case In an effort to consider a “diverse approach” in its decision process on Friday.
on Thursday, Former Facebook Chief Security Officer Alex Stamos signed a public letter Urged the Oversight Board to implement Facebook’s decision to remove Trump. “Without social media spreading Trump’s statements, it seems unlikely that these incidents are likely,” the authors of the comment wrote.
“There is no doubt that close calls will take place under a policy that allows the deplatforming of political leaders in extreme circumstances. This was not one of them. “