Meta Whitewashes Human Rights Impact In First Annual Human Rights Report
“Master Class in Spin and Obfuscation” Breaks Promises to Civil Society, Indian Activists; Ignores Pressing Human Rights Crises and Concerns
14 July 2022 — The Real Facebook Oversight Board issued the following statement, attributable to a spokesperson, about the release of Facebook’s first-ever “Human Rights Report.” -
Meta/Facebook always puts PR first, and today’s first ever “Human Rights Report” is a master class in spin and obfuscation.
Ignoring their long-delayed Human Rights Impact Assessment on violations in India, Meta instead issues an inadequate “summary,” whitewashing the religious violence fomented in India across their platforms. Meta had promised to consult with civil society orgs who participated in the HRIA process, many of whom had no notice of this report or any input at all. Facebook’s “independent” law firm was also not allowed to interview Frances Haugen, meaning that the report will be lacking the most significant revelations about the inside workings of Facebook.
Beyond India, the report is a work of fiction, denial and willful ignorance:
- Facebook touts their progress on content moderation, ignoring the unconscionable legal action against Daniel Moutang, the Kenyan whistleblower who has alleged significant human rights abuses in the company’s outsourced content moderation centers.
- Facebook highlights their election integrity work in the 2020 US election, failing to note that the most significant safeguards implemented were already removed by January 6th, and are not in place today — in the U.S., Brazil, Kenya or any nation facing decisive 2022 elections.
- Facebook does not include the pleas from Rohingya youth demanding accountability for violence and hate across Meta’s platforms.
- Facebook summarizes its work on COVID-19 while downplaying their own role in widespread and deadly vaccine disinformation.
These reports are PR, not fact, and should be treated as such. We demand Facebook release the full, complete and un-redacted India HRIA, in consultation with civil society organizations who participated in the HRIA process. And we call again for independent, external oversight and regulation of Facebook. Without it, a self-reporting, self-regulating Meta will continue to violate human rights with impunity and share only the details they like.
Real Facebook Oversight Board members are available for interviews. Statements do not reflect the individual positions of all Real Facebook Oversight Board Members. Contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.