“Facebook is not just guilty of being complicit in legitimizing censorship; it is enabling harm and state-sponsored violence directed against activists.” – Bayan
By DANIEL ASIDO
MANILA – Progressive alliance Bagong Alyansang Makabayan (Bayan) on Wednesday denounced what it called as ‘automated censorship’ of Facebook and other social media networks after posts honoring the late Filipino revolutionary leader and Communist Party of the Philippines founder Jose Maria Sison were removed.
Bayan said that Facebook led the ‘policing’ through automated censorship and algorithm after posts linked to Sison were taken down as he was tagged as part of the Dangerous Individuals and Organizations.
As reported by investigative news website ‘The Intercept,’ Facebook referred to the definition of ‘enemies of the state’ by the government where Sison is tagged as a ‘terrorist’ as a basis to take down the posts.
“It is absurd to claim that censoring posts is aimed at promoting public safety when the platform allows the proliferation of posts that incite hate, bigotry, misogyny, and violence directed against activists, government critics, and Leftist groups,” Bayan said in a statement.
“Facebook is not just guilty of being complicit in legitimizing censorship; it is enabling harm and state-sponsored violence directed against activists,” it added.
Sison died last December 16 due to heart failure while in exile in the Netherlands at the age of 83. The CCP founder was hospitalized for two weeks prior to his death.
The group is calling on the tech giant to review its community standards and to instead pour its resources into cracking down on troll operations rather than legitimizing censorship and enabling state-sponsored attacks against activists.
“We call on internet users to resist digital censorship by challenging the unjust and arbitrary actions of Facebook. We enjoin fellow Filipinos and digital rights advocates to defend and assert our freedom of expression amid the intensifying attacks of state forces,” the group added. (RVO)