Supervisory board members will meet with Facebook whistleblower Frances Haugen as he investigates the company’s controversial “cross-check” system.
“In light of Ms. Haugen’s serious allegations regarding Facebook, we have invited her to speak to the Board in the coming weeks, which she has accepted,” the Supervisory Board wrote in a statement. “Board members appreciate the opportunity to discuss Ms. Haugen’s experiences and gather information that can help achieve greater transparency and accountability from Facebook through our decisions and recommendations.”
Haugen confirmed the upcoming meeting in a statement. “Facebook has lied to the board several times and I look forward to sharing the truth with them,” she wrote.
Management also pushed Facebook to provide more information about the program, in light of Haugen’s findings. “Cross-checking” is an internal label used by the social network for high-profile accounts, including celebrities, politicians and athletes. The company said it aims to provide an additional level of oversight when those accounts could violate the platform’s rules. But according to documents submitted by Haugen Wall Street Journal, Facebook often does not review violations of these accounts, effectively allowing them to violate its policies without consequence. In other cases, reviews are so late that content that violates the rules is reviewed millions of times before being removed.
Crosscheck was also a central issue in the Supervisory Board’s action on Donald Trump’s suspension on Facebook. Management asked Facebook for more details on cross-checking, saying the company’s rules “should apply to all users”. However, Facebook said it was “not possible” to provide additional information, although Haugen’s announcement indicated that the company was monitoring issues related to the program.
A Facebook spokesman declined to comment. The company said the following last month The Wall Street Journal reporting that he had asked the board for recommendations on how to improve cross-checking. The supervisory board will release its first transparency report later this month, which will provide updated cross-checking data, based on its conversations with Facebook and Haugen officials. The report will be the committee’s first assessment of how the social network responded to its policy recommendations.
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