New York Times: What if the U.S. Bans TikTok?. “Since Secretary of State Mike Pompeo told Fox News…that the United States was considering banning TikTok over national security concerns, a sentiment echoed by President Donald Trump in an interview on Tuesday, TikTok users have been scrambling.”
CNN: Facebook considers banning political ads in days before US election. “Facebook is considering banning political advertising on its platform in the days leading up to the US presidential election in November, a person familiar with the discussions told CNN Business. The potential ban has been under consideration since last fall, the person said.” I am 100% opposed to this because I believe Facebook will mess it up and not apply it consistently.
Page Six: Instagram apologizes to Bella Hadid for removing pic of her dad’s passport. “Instagram has apologized to Bella Hadid after she accused the social media platform of ‘bullying’ for removing a photo she posted of her father’s passport, which showed his birthplace as Palestine.”
TechNode: Social media site Weibo to heavily restrict external links. “Weibo, one of China’s biggest social media platforms, said that it will start to block user links to all but a select number of websites within weeks, in an effort to fight fraud.”
Mashable: Google bans ads for products that people use to stalk partners . “In its latest advertising policy update, Google announced that “stalkerware” apps will not be able to advertise through Google anymore starting Aug. 11. In case you aren’t aware, that’s a particularly odious class of software that is largely associated with abusive partners who want to stalk the movements and activities of their significant others.”
LiveMint (India): Army expands list of social media apps banned for use among personnel . “The Indian Army has expanded the list of social media apps, many with China origin, banned for use among its million plus strong personnel. Besides the 59 Chinese apps that have been banned across the country, the Army has prohibited the use of video and live streaming apps, including Zoom and Vmate, gaming apps like PUBG besides some e-commerce, news, music and anti-virus apps.”
CNN: Instagram and Facebook ban all content promoting conversion therapy. “Instagram and Facebook will ban any content that promotes conversion therapy, the social media platforms told CNN on Friday, after activists called on it to block providers from advertising their services online. Facebook said it would expand its existing policies on hate speech worldwide to include posts that advertise or promote the practice, in a move that applies to both platforms.”
Vice: The U.S. Army Twitch Channel Is Banning People for Asking About War Crimes. “The American military is getting big into esports. The U.S. Army has launched its own Twitch channel where members of its team stream Call of Duty: Warzone and interact with users on the site. The channel has videos going back two months, but things got spicy in the chat on Wednesday night when viewers started asking questions about U.S. war crimes.”
CNN: Facebook removes Roger Stone from Instagram after linking him to fake accounts. “Facebook announced Wednesday it had shut down pages and accounts linked to Roger Stone and Proud Boys, a far-right group Facebook has banned under its hate policies. Stone’s own Instagram account was shut down as part of the takedown. The network of more than 100 Facebook pages, accounts and Instagram accounts spent more than $300,000 on Facebook and Instagram ads to promote their posts. Some of the pages and accounts included false personas, an analysis commissioned by Facebook found.”
Foreign Affairs: Facebook’s Flawed Plan to End Antiquities Trafficking. “As scholars who have spent years tracking the illicit trade in Middle Eastern artifacts and studying its role in financing terrorism, we welcome Facebook’s decision as an indication that it is beginning to acknowledge the scale of this dangerous problem. But we have grave concerns about the company’s planned approach to combating antiquities trafficking. Facebook’s new policy, while more proactive than its previous one, fails to acknowledge that because antiquities trafficking is a war crime under international humanitarian law, the company should therefore preserve as evidence—and not simply destroy—the material it removes from its site.”
OneZero: Months Before Reddit Purge, The_Donald Users Created a New Home. “Monday, Reddit banned thousands of subreddits including The_Donald, a conservative community of nearly 800,000 members accused of inciting violence, spreading white supremacist propaganda, and other repeat offenses since its creation in 2015. The takedown marked Reddit’s latest push to curb hate speech on the platform, and The_Donald was a ripe target for moderation. But while the community was purged from Reddit, its members have been relocating to an alternate website for months now, suggesting that users were expecting the ban — and serving as a reminder that ‘deplatforming’ is only so useful.”
Neowin: Facebook will have its hate speech controls audited. “Media Rating Council (MRC), a nonprofit organization that manages accreditation for media research and rating purposes, will conduct the audit, and evaluate how the firm safeguards advertisers from appearing next to harmful content. Additionally, the firm will assess the accuracy of Facebook’s reporting in specific domains. Facebook hasn’t decided when the audit will take place or what will be its scope.” Uh-huh.
CBS News: Reddit bans pro-Trump forum “The_Donald” in hate speech crackdown. “Reddit has banned ‘The_Donald,’ a forum that united fans of President Donald Trump on the social media platform. While announcing policy changes, Reddit CEO Steve Huffman said Monday that the popular subreddit was shut down because it continuously violated its hate speech rules.”
The Verge: YouTube bans Stefan Molyneux, David Duke, Richard Spencer, and more for hate speech. “YouTube has banned several prominent white supremacist channels, including those belonging to Stefan Molyneux, David Duke, and Richard Spencer. Other channels banned include American Renaissance (with its associated channel AmRen Podcasts) and the channel for Spencer’s National Policy Institute. The channels repeatedly violated YouTube’s policies, a YouTube spokesperson said, by alleging that members of protected groups were inferior. These come alongside other violations that led to YouTube taking action.”
MSN News: Democratic Senators Ask Zuckerberg to Act on White Supremacy. “Facebook Inc. Chief Executive Officer Mark Zuckerberg faces demands from Senate Democrats for answers about hate groups on the platform at the same time a growing number of companies are pulling advertising from its sites over harmful content. In a letter to Zuckerberg Tuesday, three Democratic senators question what they call the company’s ‘lack of action to prevent white supremacist groups from using the platform as a recruitment and organizational tool’ despite Facebook’s stated policies on hate speech.”