Facebook moves into speech policing

I don’t even use it, but I’m shutting down my Facebook account. This is why:

Facebook pledged Monday to combat racist hate speech on its German-language network amid an upsurge in xenophobic comments online as Germany faces an unprecedented influx of refugees.

The US social media network said it would encourage “counter speech” and step up monitoring of anti-foreigner commentary, as company representatives were due to meet German Justice Minister Heiko Maas later Monday.

Facebook said it would work with other organisations in Germany “to develop appropriate solutions to counter xenophobia and racism and to represent this online”.

It also urged users to report offensive postings and announced a partnership with the group Voluntary Self-Monitoring of Multimedia Service Providers (FSM).

As Germany faces a record influx of refugees and a backlash from the far right, social media such as Facebook have seen an upsurge of hateful, xenophobic commentary.

Big Brother being corporate rather than government doesn’t make it any better. This is Orwellian in the extreme.