2020-07-26 Facebook Content Moderation

I’m reading “Facebook” by Steven Levy. In ‘The Ugly’ chapter he explains how FB hires or contracts for thousands of moderators to take down content that violates their standards. These moderators may be psychologically harmed by all the nasty stuff that’s posted. And some things are borderline, they have a difficult time deciding if it should be removed. The questionable content may have to be referred up the chain of command.

My thoughts are that why is FB hiring so many people to do this job? The users who are making the complaints should be the ones who ‘shoot down’ the questionable content. The one who complained should be given a ‘magazine’ of virtual ammo, maybe 9 rounds, and he can shoot out pixels by clicking on the questionable content. If enough viewers complain, the content will be nearly unreadable and will no longer have users complaining. If a single or a few viewers believe it’s offensive, then the questionable content will survive with a few damaged spots but otherwise okay.

Another way to slow down the legibility of the content is to fracture the photo or text so that it is difficult to read or view. Sort of like tearing a photo up into strips or pieces. The more disarray there is, the more difficult the viewer will have comprehending the content. Or the content could be made distorted or wavy like they do to the Captcha photos that users see but machines can’t read.

The whole procedure can be made into entertainment, like a game or puzzle. The viewers will be the content moderators who judge the content and decide to censor it. The viewers can be assigned a maximum amount of virtual ammo during a certain time, like a day or week. The viewers could have to earn ammo by the number of items of questionable content they process.

There are over 3 Billion FB users and there should be many times the number needed to process all the questionable content that is posted. And there would be very little chance of subjecting any single person to content that could cause psychological damage.

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