Facebook, an enhanced protection program for six million celebrities

Facebook, an enhanced protection program for six million celebrities
Facebook, an enhanced protection program for six million celebrities

Alex Wong via Getty Images

WASHINGTON, DC – APRIL 10: Facebook co-founder, Chairman and CEO Mark Zuckerberg testifies before a combined Senate Judiciary and Commerce committee hearing in the Hart Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill April 10, 2018 in Washington, DC. Zuckerberg, 33, was called to testify after it was reported that 87 million Facebook users had their personal information harvested by Cambridge Analytica, a British political consulting firm linked to the Trump campaign. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)

The law is not the same for everyone, at least on Facebook. It exists on the most popular social network in the world a program – named XCheck, in Italian ‘cross-check’ – which allows the most followed accounts, celebrities, politicians, sportsmen and journalists, to avoidthe temporary block per all the contents published by them. In practice, a small circle of high-profile characters can use Facebook with different, less stringent rules from those imposed on ‘normal’.

This was reported by the Wall Street Journal, according to which the social profiles of lot of public figures, in the past, were regularly blocked for the thousands of reports that they received for each post or image published. Un very widespread phenomenon, that of reports from pulp against celebrities and politicians, often coordinate from other platforms with the participation of thousands of users. The result era that of a temporary ban of the reported account, even without a real control on the merits of the shared content.

For profiles subjected to the XCheck program all that it doesn’t happen anymore.IThe reported post comes transmitted to a team of better trained moderators to ensure that Facebook rules are applied correctly. According to WSJ, the program involves 5.8 million high profile users. Only 10% of the posts analyzed by XCheck would have actually been blocked for violating the internal laws of the Menlo Park giant. But whose ‘privileged’ accounts are they? One is that of the Brazilian footballer Neymar. In 2019 he published photos of a naked girl, the same one he had accused the PSG striker of rape. A clear violation of the platform standards, but the post was not immediately blocked, despite the reports. During the few hours that remained online, protected by the XCheck program, the photos of the woman were seen by 56 million people, the population of Italy.

, Andy Stone, the head of communication of Facebook’s internal policies, admitted the existence of the program, specifying that a 2018 post from the official Facebook page announceswill the entry into operation of a “cross-checking system to offer an additional level of review to high-profile users”. Aeven though it wasn’t called XCheck at the time. The discovery of the program sparked vast controversy on social media. For The Verge, a well-known blog specializing in technology and the Internet, it is not the first time that Mark Zuckerberg’s social network has reserved privileged treatment for a category of users, deciding to apply different rules. All at its absolute discretion. The most important case is that of Donald Trump, suspended by Facebook funtil June 2023, for some post that would have praised althe assault from Capitol Hill. Even in that case, the decision to ban the White House tenant gave way to strong criticism of Menlo Park: just over a year earlier it was Zuckerberg himself who defined his creature as a bastion of freedom of expression for all its members.

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Facebook enhanced protection program million celebrities

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