Facebook has approved a new three-year, $150 million commitment to fund its global oversight board, commonly called Facebook’s “Supreme Court,” which acts as a supposedly independent body that reviews the company’s actions and policies.
Axios reports that Facebook (now known as Meta) announced a new three-year, $150 million commitment to fund its global content watchdog, which is designed to act as a ostensibly independent review board. analyzing company decisions and policies.
The board was created to help the company make tough calls about content moderation, but many have questioned how much power the board has in the past when Facebook seemed reluctant to defer to the board on decisions.
In May, Facebook withdrew its request for policy guidance from the board over its decision to moderate content related to Russia’s war in Ukraine, which the board called “disappointing.” In other cases, however, Facebook has listened to the board’s suggestions.
The board’s decisions are not binding, and Facebook is not required to follow their recommendations, but is required to respond to the board. In the past, the company has agreed to implement changes based on the board’s suggestions.
The Oversight Board was created in 2020 and was the first social media moderation board of its kind. The board received its first round of $130 million in funding from Facebook. That money was transferred to a Supervisory Board Trust that allows the board to operate as a separate entity from Facebook, hoping to remove any conflicts of interest.
The board began hearing complaints from users in 2020 and has in the past persuaded Facebook to reverse policy decisions. Facebook referred its decision to suspend former President Trump to the Oversight Board in January 2021. The board chose to uphold Facebook’s decision, but told the social media company to reconsider the “indefinite” nature of the ban.
In response, Facebook said former President Trump’s ban would last for two years and unveiled new policies for handling speech by prominent politicians.
Read more on Axios here.
Lucas Nolan is a reporter for Sageznews News covering issues of free speech and internet censorship. Follow him on Twitter @LucasNolan