Facebook Publishes Internal Enforcement Guidelines and Expands Appeals Process

By Nitish Singh / April 24, 2018

Monika Bickert, Vice President of Global Policy Management at Facebook, revealed its internal enforcement guidelines on content. The expansive post details how the platform continues to be one of the best places on the internet to freely discuss topics and share opinions without being censored.


Image Courtesy of Gadgethacks

How Facebook Polices are Developed

The content policy team is responsible for developing the Community Standards of the social media website. There are people in eleven workplaces around the world who are experts in various subject matters such as terrorism, child safety, and hate speech. Most of the team had worked on issues of expression and safety long before they joined the team at Facebook.

Bickert herself has worked as a criminal prosecutor while other team members include a rape crisis counselor, a human rights lawyer, a teacher and more. The team has meetings every week on the impact of the website’s policies and how they affect global communities.

Enforcing the Guidelines

The policies of the social media website are only as good as the enforcement according to Bickert. She also believes the enforcement of the guidelines is not quite perfect. Identifying potential violations of Community Guidelines is the first step of the process and technology helps Facebook identify sensitive data that does not comply with the guidelines laid out by the team.

This process includes artificial intelligence and also reports sent manually by users to identify any form of content on the website that is found to be violating the standards set by the team. There are more than 7500 content reviewers for the website who work 24/7 in over 40 languages. The number is said to have grown by 40% since last year.

The Appeal System

Over the next year, the appeal system will be in place on the platform to help users appeal against bans on posts or content if they feel they do not violate Community Guidelines. Any post that is removed because it violates Community Standards gets removed and will allow 24 hours for the original poster to request an additional review.

It will lead to a second review by a person within 24 hours. If Facebook believes that they have been mistaken, they will restore the post, photo or video. The feature is still in development and is set to get a lot more violation types, allowing people to provide better context for the content that is taken down.

Participation and Feedback

Keeping the content on Facebook in line is not just the job of the Community Standards team. It also requires users to be involved all around the world. Facebook Forums is set to launch in May which will cover public events from Germany, France, the UK, India, Singapore, the US and other countries. Bickert’s post states Facebook will directly receive feedback from these places to carve a clearer path for improving the community guidelines.

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