Facebook, social media criticized as slow to stop New Zealand video


Spokeswoman Mia Garlick from Facebook New Zealand said the firm was "working around the clock to remove violating content using a combination of technology and people". Of the 1.5 million videos of the massacre, filmed by a body-worn camera on the perpetrator nearly in the style of a video game, 1.2 million were blocked at upload.

A consortium of companies based in New Zealand has chose to pull digital ads from Google and Facebook to show protest against the tech giants failing to completely throw the Christchurch mosques shootings video from their platform.

"The live stream video of the shootings in Christchurch has been classified by the Chief Censor's Office as objectionable", police added.

Facebook said it "quickly" removed the video, plus the gunman's account and Instagram, and in the first 24 hours scrubbed 1.5 million videos worldwide "of which 1.2 million were blocked at upload".

Facebook is "removing any praise or support for the crime and the shooter or shooters as soon as we're aware", she said.

"There is extremely distressing footage relating to the incident in Christchurch circulating online", New Zealand police wrote on Twitter Friday.

On Sunday, New Zealand's government informed Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other online platforms that sharing any version of the footage, including those edited to remove graphic content, is a violation of the law.

The point here is not that the social media platforms removed the shooting footage from their platforms, the real problem is: Why couldn't they automatically catch the upload and re-uploads of such footage?

This article has been adapted from its original source. "This is an issue that goes well beyond New Zealand".

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New Zealand's biggest telecommunications company, Spark NZ Ltd, worked with a number of broadband providers late on Friday to cut off access to dozens of websites that were redistributing the video of the killings, to stop it spreading.

The social network released the information as politicians and commentators called for more to be done to police live-streaming.

Facebook Livestream, which the shooter appeared to use, is an 'extremely hard hole to plug, ' said Amanullah.

Both Facebook and Alphabet Inc's Youtube said they are also using automated tools to identify violent content and remove them.

"Perhaps when the dollars start to go, you'll get a response", he said.

In January 2018, the family of a slain Cleveland man sued Facebook, alleging the social media platform could have done more to prevent his murder. This act of far-right terrorism saw 50 people killed and as many injured.

The social news site said it had also taken down posts that linked to the video or which showed the attack.

Social media expert and Buzzfeed journalist Craig Silverman said the killer "created the equivalent of a multiplatform content strategy" that was "meticulously planned".