Connect with us

Tech News

Facebook removed 14 million pieces of terrorist content this year, and the numbers are rising – TechCrunch

Published

on

Facebook must exert constant vigilance to prevent its platform from being taken over by ne’er-do-wells, but how exactly it does that is only really known to itself. Today, however, the company has graced us with a bit of data on what tools it’s using and what results they’re getting — for instance, more than 14 million pieces of “terrorist content” removed this year so far.

More than half of that 14 million was old content posted before 2018, some of which had been sitting around for years. But as Facebook points out, that content may very well have also been unviewed that whole time. It’s hard to imagine a terrorist recruitment post going unreported for 970 days (the median age for content in Q1) if it was seeing any kind of traffic.

Perhaps more importantly, the numbers of newer content removed (with, to Facebook’s credit, a quickly shrinking delay) appear to be growing steadily. In Q1, 1.2 million items were removed; in Q2, 2.2 million; in Q3, 2.3 million. User-reported content removals are growing as well, though they are much smaller in number — around 16,000 in Q3. 99 percent of it, Facebook proudly reports, is removed “proactively.”

Something worth noting: Facebook is careful to avoid positive or additive verbs when talking about this content, for instance it won’t say that “terrorists posted 2.3 million pieces of content,” but rather that was the number of “takedowns” or content “surfaced.” This type of phrasing is more conservative and technically correct, as they can really only be sure of their own actions, but it also serves to soften the fact that terrorists are posting hundreds of thousands of items monthly.

The numbers are hard to contexualize. Is this a lot or a little? Both, really. The amount of content posted to Facebook is so vast that almost any number looks small next to it, even a scary one like 14 million pieces of terrorist propaganda.

It is impressive, however, to hear that Facebook has greatly expanded the scope of its automated detection tools:

Our experiments to algorithmically identify violating text posts (what we refer to as “language understanding”) now work across 19 languages.

And it fixed a bug that was massively slowing down content removal:

In Q2 2018, the median time on platform for newly uploaded content surfaced with our standard tools was about 14 hours, a significant increase from Q1 2018, when the median time was less than 1 minute. The increase was prompted by multiple factors, including fixing a bug that prevented us from removing some content that violated our policies, and rolling out new detection and enforcement systems.

The Q3 number is two minutes. It’s a work in progress.

No doubt we all wish the company had applied this level of rigor somewhat earlier, but it’s good to know that the work is being done. Notable is that a great deal of this machinery is not focused on simply removing content, but on putting it in front of the constantly growing moderation team. So the most important bit is still, thankfully and heroically, done by people.

Source link

Continue Reading
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Tech News

Elon Musk Doubles Down On Twitter Bots, Says ‘Deal Cannot Move Forward’ Without Proof

Published

on

The Tesla chief claims that his offer to purchase Twitter was based on the company’s SEC filing, which allegedly mentioned that the percentage of spam accounts is five percent or lower, but the company hasn’t shown tangible proof of that being the case. If Musk’s latest words are to be taken at face value, he might pull out of the deal citing misleading disclosures by Twitter.

Experts claim that this is one of Musk’s tactics to strong-arm his way into lowering the deal’s final value of roughly $44 billion. Musk himself has expressed similar intentions. As per a Bloomberg report, he recently remarked at an event that lowering the price “won’t be out of the question.” “You can’t pay the same price for something that is much worse than they claimed,” Musk was quoted as saying by the Economic Times.

Musk’s latest bombshell comes merely days after he claimed that the Twitter deal was on hold owing to the uncertainty around the spam account disclosure, but he quickly replied that he was still committed to the acquisition. A few days ago, Twitter CEO Parag Agrawal tried to offer some clarity on the bot situation, and how the company tries to tackle the menace. Musk, on the other hand, replied with a poop emoji on the last tweet of the thread.

Continue Reading

Tech News

Apple Just Figured Out A Killer Use-Case For AR

Published

on

Live Captions were revealed by Apple for iPhone, iPad, and Mac computers. Deaf and hard-of-hearing users can use Live Captions on audio-only phone calls, FaceTime calls, video meetings, social media, and streaming media. The size of the font with Apple’s Live Captions feature will be adjustable for easy reading, and it’ll all also work in reverse — so to speak. Users will also be able to type responses in real-time and have their text spoken aloud to a recipient — that’s effectively text-to-speech (TTS), a feature that’s always been a fan favorite on every platform on which it’s been made available in the past. Apple suggested that the Live Captions feature will always maintain users’ privacy and that when the feature is deployed, no other users will know. Additionally, VoiceOver — Apple´s screen reader — will add 20 new locales and languages.

Continue Reading

Tech News

The Real Life Inspiration Behind Maserati’s Famous Logo

Published

on

Since the company got its start in Bologna, Italy, Mario was inspired by a statue erected in the city’s Piazza Maggiore in the 16th century (via Mermaids of Earth). The Fountain of Neptune (aka “The Giant”) is a looming statue of the Roman god of the sea. He holds a trident in his right hand, while his left extends outward to calm the waters. Below him are four cherubs, each representing the rivers Nile, Amazon, Danube, and the Ganges. The masterpiece was created by Flemish sculptor Jean de Boulogne (aka Giambologna) between 1563 and 1567.

The statue of bronze and stone comes with an intriguing and controversial legend. Commissioned by Pius IV to symbolize his power and reign, the Pope became worried by the size of the statue’s genitals and ordered Giambologna to make them smaller. The sculptor begrudgingly complied, or so everyone thought. If you stand behind and to the statue’s right, Neptune’s thumb protrudes out past his leg in a peculiar way that makes the god’s manliness appear bigger. 

All that aside, Mario saw the Trident as a mythological symbol of strength and vigor. The red and blue colors that adorned the original logo derived from Bologna’s city banner, and the rest, as they say … is history.

Continue Reading

Trending