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5.8 mn FB Users Have VIP Pass to Be Exempted From Harsh Action

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At least 5.8 million high-profile Facebook users have VIP pass that allows them to break rules without consequences, the media reported.

According to The Wall Street Journal, the tech giant is using a program that whitelists millions of VIP users from the company’s standard content moderation practices.

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The program is known as “cross-check” or “XCheck” and it creates special rules for content moderation when it comes to millions of VIP accounts on Facebook and Instagram, according to internal documents obtained by the Journal.

That report, which cites internal Facebook documents, said there were at least 5.8 million VIP Facebook users in 2020, CNBC reported on Monday.

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“The WSJ piece repeatedly cites Facebook’s own documents pointing to the need for changes that are in fact already underway at the company,” Andy Stone, Facebook policy communications manager, wrote on Twitter.

“We have new teams, new resources, and an overhaul of the process that is an existing work-stream at Facebook,” he added.

As per the report, every day Facebook users can have their content taken down immediately if the company’s Artificial Intelligence technologies or contracted content moderators find their posts to be in violation of the company’s rules.

Users in the XCheck program, however, may have their content stay live on Facebook’s services before being routed into a separate moderation system. That process is also staffed by better-trained content moderators who are full-time employees, according to the report.

Among them is football star Neymar. In 2019, he posted nude photos of a woman who had accused him of rape to his Facebook accounts, according to the report, the report said.

This type of content would have typically been removed, but XCheck protected Neymar’s account and blocked Facebook moderators from taking it down right away, it added.

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