Facebook: Context For The Future

Yesterday, Facebook deleted, and then restored, Elizabeth Warren’s ads criticizing the platform. Was this caused by a mistake made by Facebook's automated system, or did a Facebook employee make the decision to pull the ads? Then ... was restoring the ad a reaction to being called out by an article on Politico, or was it a response to an inquiry by the people who placed the ads?

Details matter and I'm not going to pick sides or invent facts. What interests me is the debate.

On one hand, people are pressuring all social media platforms to censor hate speech, bullying, and even coded messages in comments. On the other hand, there is no tolerance for the "test, fail, learn" methodology followed by all tech companies.

It doesn't matter if Facebook had a lapse in judgement, if its policy algorithms need to be adjusted, or simply made a mistake. (Full disclosure, Facebook is a client of ours.) What matters is that we (all of us) need to have a civil, Socratic discussion about acceptable standards and practices for 21st-century social media platforms. Clearly, the old rules are not adequate. As always, your thoughts and comments are both welcome and strongly encouraged.

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Shelly Palmer is Fox 5 New York's On-air Tech Expert (WNYW-TV) and the host of Fox Television's monthly show Shelly Palmer Digital Living. He also hosts United Stations Radio Network's, ...

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