Big Tech has taken a beating recently. The latest punch? A series of investigative reports on Facebook and Instagram, exposing the platforms’ toxic impact on both society and young people.
The Wall Street Journal conducted an investigation on the harmful nature of Facebook’s algorithms. Specifically, articles about Facebook’s “XCheck” feature, an algorithm which is supposed to screen posts from high-profile users (like celebrities or politicians) for harmful content, is actually allowing high-profile users to violate Facebook’s rules.
XCheck puts “ordinary” users in “Facebook Jail,” a temporary ban on posting abilities. According to the Wall Street Journal, users often end up in “Facebook Jail” without explanation. For example, Colton Oakley, a graduate of the State University of New York at New Paltz, commented that anyone who was mad about loan cancellation is “sad and selfish.” He was consequently banned from posting on Facebook for three days. Countless other users have experienced similar bans for even longer periods without knowing why.
The Wall Street Journal’s ‘Facebook Files’ investigative report is sparking outrage among the platform’s users. The WSJ also conducted research regarding Instagram’s negative effects on the mental health of teen girls. Turns out, the platform makes $100 billion on users under age 22 even though Instagram knows its content reinforces depression and body dysmorphia among young women.
Sounds like Facebook’s got a mess on its hands… care to read the research yourself? Check out the WSJ’s Facebook Files report here.