On Tuesday, a Facebook post written by a former manager that was critical of the company was temporarily taken down and prevented from being viewed publicly, after it was erroneously flagged for violating Facebook’s community standards.
Former strategic partner manager Mark Luckie tweeted today that he received a notice from Facebook that his November 27 note, entitled “Facebook is failing its black employees and black users,” violated the company’s community standards.
Turns out Facebook took down my post challenging discrimination at the company, disabling users’ ability to share or read it. Further proves my point. pic.twitter.com/XOKfNIFSs2
— Mark S. Luckie (@marksluckie) December 4, 2018
About 20 minutes after his initial tweet, Luckie tweeted that he received a subsequent notification from Facebook that it had restored his post. The notification said that Facebook took a second look and determined the post didn’t violate its community standards. Luckie said that he didn’t file an appeal, though the notification he received said he did.
It’s worth noting that removing posts without notice is one of the things Luckie criticized Facebook for in his initial note.
“Black people are finding that their attempts to create ‘safe spaces’ on Facebook for conversation among themselves are being derailed by the platform itself,” Luckie wrote. “Non-black people are reporting what are meant to be positive efforts as hate speech, despite them often not violating Facebook’s terms of service. Their content is removed without notice. Accounts are suspended indefinitely.”
The more shares a post gets, the greater the likelihood that it might come across the feed of someone who might disagree with the post and try to get it taken down by saying they think it violates Facebook standards. With the amount of posts content moderators come across each day, mistakes are bound to happen. The problem is that Facebook doesn’t always give users a lot of information about why their post is taken down. The company also just recently started enabling an appeals process.
Luckie left Facebook in early November. In response to his November 27 note — which also touched on the racial discrimination he and other black employees said they faced at Facebook — Facebook’s director of corporate media relations Anthony Harrison said in a statement that “we want to fully support all employees when there are issues reported and when there may be micro-behaviors that add up. We are going to keep doing all we can to be a truly inclusive company.”
Harrison said in response to a request for comment today that Facebook is still trying to sort out what happened. We’ll update this post with any further information.