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Facebook is adding 3,000 staff to root out videos of murders

In a post published today, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said the move was being made to make the social media site safer.

Image: Dominic Lipinski/AP

SOCIAL MEDIA GIANT Facebook has announced it will hire an extra 3,000 staff to root out violent content as it faces scrutiny for a series of killings and suicides broadcast on its platform.

In a post published today, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said the move was being made to make the social media site safer.

He added the hires would constitute a near doubling of Facebook’s community operations team.

“We’re working to make these videos easier to report so we can take the right action sooner — whether that’s responding quickly when someone needs help or taking a post down.

Over the next year, we’ll be adding 3,000 people to our community operations team around the world — on top of the 4,500 we have today — to review the millions of reports we get every week, and improve the process for doing it quickly.

“These reviewers will also help us get better at removing things we don’t allow on Facebook like hate speech and child exploitation. And we’ll keep working with local community groups and law enforcement who are in the best position to help someone if they need it — either because they’re about to harm themselves, or because they’re in danger from someone else.”

Critics say the social network has been too slow to react to online violence, and questioned whether Facebook Live — a strategic area of development for the company — should be disabled, after several cases in which it was used to broadcast rapes.

Zuckerberg said Facebook has been working on better technology that can identify violent or inappropriate content — and that its efforts to screen for acts of violence appeared to be paying off.

This is important. Just last week, we got a report that someone on Live was considering suicide. We immediately reached out to law enforcement, and they were able to prevent him from hurting himself. In other cases, we weren’t so fortunate.

“No one should be in this situation in the first place, but if they are, then we should build a safe community that gets them the help they need.”

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