Case Before Oversight Board Reveals Serious Flaws in Meta’s Moderation of Anti-LGBTQ Speech

Jenni Olson is the Senior Director and Leanna Garfield is the Manager of the Social Media Safety program at GLAAD. Shutterstock Last month, the Oversight Board– the quasi-independent body funded by Meta to tackle thorny content moderation and policy questions– announced its consideration of what it dubbed the “Post in Polish Targeting Trans People” case. The Oversight Board summarizes the case as follows:  In April 2023, a Facebook user in Poland posted an image of a striped curtain in the blue, pink and white colors of the transgender flag. On the image, there is text overlay that says in Polish: ‘New technology. Curtains that hang themselves.’ The following is a summary of the official public comment issued this week to the Oversight Board by the Social Media Safety Program at GLAAD, the US-based LGBTQ media advocacy organization. Meta’s Hate Speech policy prohibits content targeting people based on protected characteristics, such as gender identity. The post in question is clearly asserting the horrific, and violative, sentiment that transgender people should kill themselves. Meta’s content moderators should have accurately enforced its policies in the first place. It is a serious problem that the post was only removed after the Oversight Board alerted Meta.  This case powerfully illuminates highly consequential systemic failures with the company’s moderation practices that have broad implications for all anti-LGBTQ hate content, as well as for content that targets all historically marginalized groups. Such moderation may be more complex than recognizing basic slurs, but this is why the company must…Case Before Oversight Board Reveals Serious Flaws in Meta’s Moderation of Anti-LGBTQ Speech