Facebook removes beheading video after David Cameron comments
Social media site now says it will take a ‘more holistic look at the context’ of videos and images before deciding if they are appropriate
Facebook has removed a video of a woman being beheaded and updated its policy on graphic violence following a public outcry against the world’s largest social media website.
In a move which David Cameron described as “irresponsible”, Facebook said on Monday that it would be allowing users to upload images and videos of graphic violence so that they could be “condemned”.
It has now backtracked on that decision, moving to take down a particular video which sparked this week’s debate. Entitled only “Challenge: Anybody can watch this video?” and carrying no warning of graphic content, it seemed to show a masked man beheading a woman in Mexico.
The operators of the site, which has 1.15 billion users and can be accessed from the age of 13, said yesterday that they have decided to “strengthen” Facebook’s policy on graphic violence.
That does not mean it will be reinstating a blanket ban on all decapitation videos – a temporary measure which was recently lifted.
In a statement, Facebook explained: “When we review content that is reported to us, we will take a more holistic look at the context surrounding a violent image or video.
“Second, we will consider whether the person posting the content is sharing it responsibly, such as accompanying the video or image with a warning and sharing it with an age-appropriate audience.
“Based on these enhanced standards, we have re-examined recent reports of graphic content and have concluded that this content improperly and irresponsibly glorifies violence. For this reason, we have removed it.”
The decision will be welcomed by those who condemned Facebook for allowing such videos to be posted in the first place, but does not bring an end to the question of how the site will police users’ reactions to violent images – or indeed if it should.
Such challenges are a mark of the site’s attempts to reposition itself in a current affairs market – seeking to compete with micro-blogging platforms like Twitter as a place where people discuss the most up to date and controversial matters of the day.
Facebook polices its site to remove pornography, hate speech and other forbidden content, and has a long-established system of tools which users can turn to if they want to report something to moderators – a level of responsibility which is relatively new to Twitter.
Life & Style blogs
Free the internet from commercial interests, says Martha Lane Fox
Replica Back to the Future Hoverboard released
When did the Eiffel Tower open to the public? Six things you didn't know about iconic structure
Contents of women's handbags can be worth more than a small car
Gold Apple Watch buyers can skip queues
Ukip supporters are 55 or older, white and socially conservative, finds British Social Attitudes Report
Street preacher quoting from the Bible fined for calling homosexuality an 'abomination'
Jeremy Clarkson sacked live: Alan Yentob 'wouldn't rule out' ex Top Gear host's BBC return
Woman filmed launching racist tirade against men on the Tube for speaking in 'own lingo'
The West has it totally wrong on Lee Kuan Yew
David Cameron calls Labour 'hopeless, sneering socialists' while announcing 7-day NHS plans
- 1 Replica Back to the Future Hoverboard released
- 2 Katie Hopkins attacked me on Twitter — so I reported her to the police for inciting racial hatred
- 3 Brixton squat flats now costing up to £3k per month show how out of control rent is in London
- 4 A new (old) cure for MRSA? Revolting recipe from the Dark Ages may be key to defeat infection
- 5 Gamers confess the worst things they've done in The Sims
iJobs Gadgets & Tech
£58000 - £65000 per annum: Ashdown Group: SQL DBA - Bromley, South East London...
£55000 - £65000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Service Delivery Manager ...
£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Software Developer is require...
£21000 - £24000 per annum + 21 days holidays: Ashdown Group: Technical Support...