Facebook moderators have been ordered to remove “dehumanizing” posts about migrants and refugees, but not Holocaust denial posts in countries where it’s outlawed, according to a new report.
“The files explain that moderators should take down Holocaust denial material in only four of the 14 countries where it is outlawed,” reported The Guardian on Wednesday, referencing leaked Facebook training documents. “One document says the company ‘does not welcome local law that stands as an obstacle to an open and connected world’ and will only consider blocking or hiding Holocaust denial messages and photographs if ‘we face the risk of getting blocked in a country or a legal risk.'”
Though Facebook stated in the documents that refugees and migrants also “will not receive the protections given to other vulnerable groups,” the social network has allegedly told moderators “to remove dehumanising speech or any ‘calls for violence’ against refugees.”
“Content ‘that says migrants should face a firing squad or compares them to animals, criminals or filth’ also violate its guidelines,” explained The Guardian in their report. “According to the documents, comments permitted under the policy include ones such as: ‘Islam is a religion of hate. Close the borders to immigrating Muslims until we figure out what the hell is going on’; ‘migrants are so filthy’; ‘migrants are thieves and robbers’; and ‘Mexican immigrants are freeloaders mooching off of tax dollars we don’t even have.'”
“Fuck immigrant” and “Keep the horny migrant teenagers away from our daughters,” are also allegedly allowed on the platform, however “it is a violation of the rules on migrants to ‘equate them to other types of criminals, eg rapists, child molesters, murderers or terrorists.'”
“As a quasi-protected category, they will not have the full protections of our hate speech policy because we want to allow people to have broad discussions on migrants and immigration which is a hot topic in upcoming elections,” stated Facebook in their training manual. “Countries are not protected… people from a country are protected”.
Followers of particular religions are also protected, as well as sexual orientations (including “asexuals”), while political ideologies, politicians, and physical traits are all allowed.
Austria, France, Germany, and Israel are the only countries listed in the documents where moderators should remove Holocaust denial posts, “not on grounds of taste, but because the company fears it might get sued.”