Meta to build a Command center: Philippines 2022 Election,
Facebook’s Parent Company “Meta” shares an update on how to keep our community safe and protect the integrity of the upcoming Philippine General election on May 9.
An Elections Operation Center filled with devoted team focusing on the forthcoming May 9 elections will be activated soon. It will outline together matter of importance from experts across the company on critical issues including misinformation, security, human rights, cybersecurity, and more to monitor and react to emerging risks in real time. This team taps from local experts who can speak the language and who have a deep understanding of the context on the ground in the Philippines.
Hate Speech and Other Harmful Content Checker
We have in place artificial intelligence technology to help us proactively identify and take out hate speech, bullying and harassment, and content that infringes our violence and incitement policies. In addition, we reduce the distribution of content that our technology identifies as Possible to be violating those policies, to prevent it from dispersing quickly. Following our review, if we determine that this content violates our policies, we take it down. We have content moderators who can analyze content in both Filipino and Cebuano – in addition to Filipinos working across the company.
Disrupting Harmful Networks.
We have devoted teams that are frequently working to find and take down coordinated campaigns that seek to target people with hate activities on our platforms.
Lately we recognized and stopped a network that violated our policies against threatening organizations. This included a network of Facebook Pages, groups and accounts upheld by the New People’s Army (NPA), a banned terrorist association, for violating our policies prohibiting groups that have a violent mission or are engaging in violence.
In view of confronting other emerging harms, we also disconnected a network of over 400 accounts, Pages, and Groups in the Philippines that worked closely to analytically violate our Community Standards and evade enforcement.
The brains behind this activity claimed to be hacktivists and relied mainly on authentic and duplicate accounts to post and amplify content about Distributed Denial of Service (DDoS) attacks, account recovery and defacing and compromising of primarily news entities’ websites in the Philippines.
As with any major civic event, we’ve also seen Inauthentic Behaviour operators from various countries become active on the margins of the upcoming Philippines elections. Here are some of the notable insights:
Context switching: We’ve removed several groups of activity that switched the emphasis of their Pages and Groups to the elections to increase their following. One Page that mainly shared non-political dance videos retitled itself to become “Bongbong Marcos news,” while another Page that started off as supporting a politician later changed its name to “Your Financial Answer” and began posting loan advice.
We remove fabrication info’s where it is likely to put people at risk for imminent physical harm. We also remove content that is likely to keep normal political practices from functioning such as content intended to suppress voting, as well as certain highly deceptive manipulated media.
We also launched the Philippine Fact-Checker Incubator program with Internews to support capacity-building for fact checking in the Philippines
Stronger Protections for Journalists and Human Rights Defenders
Together with the International Center for Journalists and the Border Center for Journalists and Bloggers, we rolled out a free virtual security and protection program to help journalists and human rights defenders guard their digital assets and counter online provocation. Meta’s Journalist Safety Hub centralizes all resources and tools available on our platforms.
We have made respective updates to our Community Standards, including expanding securities for public figures such as journalists and human rights defenders. We now took down more types of harmful content such as claims about sexual activity, links to animals and attacks through damaging physical descriptions. Our policies now also provide stronger protections against gender-based attacksfor everyone, including public figures.
Last year we launched new policies against mass harassment, and we now remove coordinated works of mass harassment that target individuals at enhanced risk of offline harm. This includes attacks against dissidents — even if the content on its own wouldn’t infringe our policies. We also remove state-linked and adversarial networks of accounts, Pages and Groups that work in hand to harass or try to mute people. These efforts and updates to policies are informed by our independent Human Rights Impact Assessment Report on the Philippines published in 2021.
Meta in conjunction with COMELEC conducted capacity building training for political parties and aspirants on Meta’s Community Standards, ads transparency, online safety and resilience for female candidates, to enhanced address gender-based harassment.
Improving the Transparency of Political Advertising
We want voters to know who is behind the ads they see on our apps, so they can make informed decisions at polling day.
Advertisers in the Philippines are now obligatored to complete our ad authorizations procedure and include “Paid for by” disclaimers on ads about elections, politics, and certain categories of social issues. Ads about social issues, elections or politics that run in the Philippines will also appear in the Ads Library so that everyone can see what ads are running, who saw them and how much was spent.
Our work to help guard the integrity of the upcoming Philippine election builds on our long-lasting efforts in understanding and addressing how social media is used in the Philippines and will continue in the lead up to, during, and after the vote