test Facebook has issued a new warning linking users to anti-extremism support and resources if the company believes the user knows someone who may be on the path to radicalization, or if the user has been exposed to extremist content themselves.
Some Facebook users in the US are receiving a warning asking if they are concerned that someone they know may be radicalized. Others are alerted that they may have been exposed to extremist content.
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A Facebook spokesperson said the testing is part of the company’s larger work to assess ways to provide resources and support to people across the platform who may have interacted with or been exposed to extremist content or who may know someone at risk.
Facebook says it continues to remove extremist content that violates its rules. This is despite the fact that the company has had problems tracking down and removing such content.
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Facebook has long been the subject of scrutiny by the public and lawmakers. Many say its algorithms divide people into extremist ideologies, something the company itself has recognized.
Facebook says the tests are in line with the Redirect initiative, which helps combat violent extremism and dangerous organizations in many countries.
According to the initiative’s webpage, it redirects users to educational resources rather than more hateful content.
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Facebook fights extremism
The social network also says the testing is part of its response to the Christchurch Call for Action campaign. The test identifies users who may have viewed extremist content and those who have had enforcement action taken against them by Facebook in the past.
The test links to resources intended to help someone intervene if they are concerned about a loved one joining a violent extremist group or movement.
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And via a support page called What Can I Do to Prevent Extremism, Facebook links to Life After Hate’s ExitUSA program, which it says helps people find a way to break free from hate and violence.
The support page also offers advice on dealing with someone trying to leave a hate group.
Facebook, like other platforms, has had problems with extremism for a long time. Although she is trying to fight it, some of her efforts should have been implemented long ago.