May 12, 2020 / 6:08 PM / 2 months ago

Facebook reports spike in takedowns of hate speech, terrorism

SAN FRANCISCO, May 12 (Reuters) - Facebook Inc on Tuesday reported a sharp increase in the number of posts it removed for promoting violence and hate speech across its apps, which it attributed to improvements made to its technology for automatically identifying text and images.

The world’s biggest social media company removed about 4.7 million posts connected to organized hate organizations on its flagship Facebook app in the first quarter of 2020, up from 1.6 million pieces of content in the previous quarter.

It also removed 9.6 million Facebook posts containing hate speech in the first quarter, compared with 5.7 million pieces of content in the fourth quarter of 2019.

Facebook released the data as part of its fifth Community Standards Enforcement Report, which it introduced in response to criticism of its lax approach to policing its platforms.

Reporting by Katie Paul; Editing by Dan Grebler

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