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Censorship Facebook Communications Social Networks Spam Your Rights Online

Facebook Says It's Filtering Comments For Spam, Not Censoring Them 155

Posted by timothy
from the you're-not-worthy-you're-not-worthy dept.
bhagwad writes "Apparently Robert Scoble tried to post a long comment on Facebook only to have a message pop up saying 'This comment seems irrelevant or inappropriate and can't be posted. To avoid having your comments blocked, please make sure they contribute to the post in a positive way.' If true, this is huge. For one the self-moderating system of comments has always been the rule so far. And with countries like India rooting for the pre-screening of content and comments, is Facebook thinking of caving into these demands?" Facebook says there's a more innocuous explanation: namely, that the comment triggered a spam filter.
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Facebook Says It's Filtering Comments For Spam, Not Censoring Them

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  • It's been a while. (Score:4, Insightful)

    by ntropy (17310) on Sunday May 06, 2012 @05:34AM (#39906823) Homepage

    First post since 1999 to say...

    Delete your fucking Facebook account, idiot.

  • by rta (559125) on Sunday May 06, 2012 @05:44AM (#39906847)

    Problem solved.

    And actually, the guy who tried to post, is the reason why FB has so much power anyway. The blocked comment itself says he can't be bothered to read blogs anymore and he just watches FB, G+ and twitter. If you want to go swimming with sharks don't be surprised if you get eaten.

  • by SuricouRaven (1897204) on Sunday May 06, 2012 @05:48AM (#39906867)
    Perhaps a poorly-worded attempt not to insult users by calling them spammers.
  • by sirdude (578412) on Sunday May 06, 2012 @05:50AM (#39906875)

    In this information age where data-mining, credit/reputation ratings, etc. are the norm, why do people who are aware of its draconian privacy aspects, potential for misuse and the time sink that it is, continue to use FB? This is a serious 87 billion dollar question.

  • by Dupple (1016592) on Sunday May 06, 2012 @05:51AM (#39906879)

    If you delete your account, all you are doing is depriving yourself access to what you have posted. You aren't depriving Facebook access to what you have posted.

  • Here's the flaged comment from TFA:

    I’m so glad I didn’t start a media business. It’s actually really tough to get new and interesting stories and to avoid falling into drama. People forget that Techcrunch was built step-by-step as a new publishing form was taking shape. PandoDaily doesn’t have that advantage and, is, indeed, facing competition from social networks that is quite good indeed. I no longer visit blogs. I watch Twitter, Google+, and Facebook, along with Hacker News, Techmeme, Quora. These are the new news sources. Plus, Pando Daily actually doesn’t have enough capital to compete head on with, say, D: All Things Digital or The Verge, both of which are expanding quickly and have ecosystems behind them.

    There's nothing worth censoring in that comment, a guy made a post, the system flagged it as spam, it was a simple false positive. The fact that it's the first that we know of is pretty damn impressive, means that their system is probably working quite well.
    I wish that the editors would quit with the sensationalist crap already, can we please use some common sense next time?

  • by Sepodati (746220) on Sunday May 06, 2012 @06:06AM (#39906933) Homepage

    It's a great way to keep in contact with a large group of people (family, friends, co-workers) and stay updated on a variety of topics (football, TV shows, news). I'm not going to email everyone individually. I'm not going to call everyone individually. They are not all individually going to come to my website or gallery. I'm not going to visit 30-odd websites to get the latest news/updates/posts.

    I have no expectations of privacy for anything I do on the web, so I don't really care what FB does with my posts or interests. That's the real world. It's not an "ignorant sheeple" don't care... it's an "educated assessment of the personal value of the system" don't care.

    If it doesn't work for you, then that's fine and obviously there are plenty of other options out there.

  • by TheRaven64 (641858) on Sunday May 06, 2012 @06:23AM (#39906971) Journal
    You are depriving Facebook of access to your future comments though. You're also making Facebook just a little bit less valuable to your friends (who can't use it to contact you anymore) and to advertisers (who can't use it to sell you things anymore).
  • by cvtan (752695) on Sunday May 06, 2012 @07:13AM (#39907085)
    It's always annoying when people become successful doing things that you don't believe in.
    You're just miffed that you didn't think of it first.
    If your grandchildren are on it, you have to be on it. The end.
    [But is is a colossal waste of time.]
  • by indeterminator (1829904) on Sunday May 06, 2012 @07:37AM (#39907133)

    What interest would they have in preventing discussion of xtube? Are they operating a competing pr0n site?

    They're thinking of the children, I would guess. And "grown-ups" using FB at work.

  • by aglider (2435074) on Sunday May 06, 2012 @08:57AM (#39907345) Homepage

    What'd be the difference between "filtering" and "censoring"?
    How would you tell spam and non-spam apart?
    Will I still be able to read what you filtered out as spam?
    Why don't you leave the users themselves to trash what they consider useless on their own?

  • by BasilBrush (643681) on Sunday May 06, 2012 @08:17PM (#39911403)

    I don't PRESUME anything. The list is about things in my life, I have complete knowledge about everything I mentioned. Unlike you.

    If you and they have an IP connection then you both could have connected to an IRC network, and kept in real-time contact with them all ever since the early 90s.

    I know what IRC is, and the experience is horrible. My less geeky friends wouldn't know what it was, and would be even less likely to be prepared to use it. So no I couldn't contact them that way. And what room? Make one just for me and my friends? What about their friends that are not mine? Start multiple rooms? But then getting the message to just your own friends... It's a fucking horrible nightmare. IRC is not built for networking.If you think IRC is the answer, you don't understand the problem.

    And you also presume they don't have mobile phones. Or email.

    Phone: Right, so if I want to tell my friends about something, I have to make over X phone calls. Where X is an impracticably large number.

    Email is the closest, it works OK for me arranging things. But as a way of exchanging things that might be of interest to friends, chatting, it's not the right tool. I always used email, and none of the things I listed would have happened through that medium.

    Or membership of a forum dedicated to whatever common interest you share.

    My guess is that this is why you don't understand. Those people that share a common interest with and you talk to on forums... they're not your friends. Friends are people you interact with in real life, and Facebook acts as a dedicated tool for not losing contact with them in between the times when you see them. If you don't have many real friends, you may note see the need for Facebook.

Thus spake the master programmer: "After three days without programming, life becomes meaningless." -- Geoffrey James, "The Tao of Programming"

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