Update: This Problem Has Been Fixed. Facebook Has Adjusted Its Algorithm To Better Accommodate Social Justice Language
[More Information About Update and Fix:]
Whenever people write about social justice issues they inevitably use words that describe oppressive and abusive situations. For a period of time at the end of 2019 the Facebook algorithm was interpreting those words as abusive. We wrote them a lot of letters about what was going on and they fixed it.
The blog below describes the situation before the fix took place.
[End Of Update]
Our Facebook page was on a 'Temporary Hold' until this morning because the Facebook algorithm has been changed and dialed to high related to words it flags as "abusive."
We were informed that we did something to violate Community Standards but we will not be informed what it was.
Our page has been placed on hold twice in the last 30 days for a total for 20 days.
We've always tried to shine a light on religious bigotry. Normally we wouldn't hesitate to post the following article. Right now we're afraid to post it. The title of the article would almost assuredly trigger an "abusive speech" flag. We didn't even post the title of this article in this blog post. Click on the story and you'll see what we mean.
Pastor Robert Jeffress Has Made Inflammatory Comments About Jews, Muslims, Mormons And Hindus. He Just Spoke At Trump’s Hanukkah Party.
We hope this problem is fixed soon. Our post reach was turned off for the better part of the last 30 days, just in time for the Christmas season. We know of several other progressive Christian social media outlets affected in a similar manner.
We admire what Facebook is attempting to do but it's affecting us dramatically.
You can't write about social justice, situations where 'the least of these' are being abused or oppressed, without using language describing how they're being abused or oppressed. Artificial intelligence algorithms are going to misinterpret said language.
We're currently paranoid about everything we post. We never know what language will trigger a 'flag' again and cause another hold on our page.
If Christians can't advocate for the sick, the poor, the hungry, the oppressed, the homeless, the persecuted and the ignored we are in serious trouble as a nation. Fixes must be devised. Social media companies must flag appropriate accounts as social justice advocates and code algorithms to examine the language they use under a unique set of criteria.
We have long taken pride in speaking the words of Jesus to power in no uncertain terms. Right now we can't do that.
“You can safely assume you've created God in your own image when it turns out that God hates all the same people you do.” -- Anne Lamott
If abuse of 'the least of these' concerns you as much as it does us, please contribute to our Seasonal Fund.
About TCL Blog
We’re not about Dogma here. We’re just Christians who think the political and Christian right-wing have their priorities wrong.
Charles Toy is the founding member of The Christian Left. We're sure you will enjoy his passion as well as his wit. Guest bloggers featured often.