RT lodges complaint with Russian media watchdog after Facebook takes down Instagram page of its Redfish digital content project
RT has asked the Russian authorities to put pressure on American tech giant Facebook over what it has described as an act of censorship against its digital content project Redfish, whose Instagram account was suspended this week.
The decision made by the California-based company, which owns Instagram, to take down the account of Redfish violates Russian law, barring Russian citizens from consuming content of a Russian media outlet, RT argued in complaints which it sent to Russian media regulator Roskomnadzor (RKN) and the Prosecutor General’s Office. It asked the government to look into the situation and take appropriate steps.
Facebook cited possible unspecified violations of Instagram community standards when explaining the suspension of the Redfish page. The account had over 419,000 followers before its content became inaccessible to the public.Also on rt.com RT’s digital content project Redfish laments ‘censorship’ after Facebook blocks it on Instagram without proper explanation
The Redfish team believes their project to be the victim of a censorship campaign, which earlier this year resulted in a brief suspension of its Facebook page. It was restored after a threat of sanctions from RKN, but it remains heavily restricted, limiting its ability to reach out to new audiences.
Like other Silicon Valley giants, Facebook is notoriously inconsistent and opaque about its content moderation decisions. Earlier this week, the Wall Street Journal revealed that the social network has a system which allegedly shields millions of higher-profile users from being sanctioned by algorithmic censors. The higher-tier accounts belong to people whom Facebook considers “newsworthy,” “influential or popular,” and “PR risky,” according to the report.
In some cases the XCheck system spectacularly backfires, like when it allowed what were essentially revenge porn images to remain published on the Instagram account of a Brazilian soccer star for over a day, before a human moderator managed to override the censorship protection.Also on rt.com Facebook censors German anti-lockdown movement under new rules to prevent real users from organizing & amplifying ‘harmful’ ideas
Large US social media platforms enjoy legal protection from being sued for content they host under American law. Over the past several years they have been playing an increasingly prominent role in policing and suppressing content deemed undesirable by the US government and its allies. On Thursday, Facebook announced it will go after authentic accounts spreading information that causes “social harm,” with German anti-lockdown movement Querdenken becoming the first target.
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