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Instagram algorithm allows rape threat to be used in Facebook ad

By midian182
Sep 22, 2017
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  1. The problem with algorithms is that they still can’t spot certain offensive content that a human would flag. The latest example of this comes from Instagram, who used an image that said “I will rape you before I kill you, you filthy *****,” in a Facebook ad.

    Olivia Solon, a reporter for the Guardian, discovered that Instagram was using her screenshot of a threatening email to advertise the app on its parent company. The subject line was “Olivia, you ****ing *****!!!!!!!!.”

    Solon posted the screenshot on Instagram last year. Explaining the message, she wrote: “This is an email I received this afternoon. Sadly this is all too common for women on the internet. I am sure this is just an ***** rather than any kind of credible threat but it’s still pretty vile.”

    Instagram used the image in an ad shown to Solon’s sister. It included the line “See Olivia Solon’s photo and posts from friends on Instagram.” As the post received three likes and more than a dozen comments, it seems Instagram’s algorithms classed it as engaging content that could be used in an ad.

    “We are sorry this happened – it’s not the experience we want someone to have,” Instagram said in a statement. “This notification post was surfaced as part of an effort to encourage engagement on Instagram. Posts are generally received by a small percentage of a person’s Facebook friends.”

    Last week, Facebook came under fire for allowing its algorithms to generate categories such as “Jew Hater” — based on interests and phrases found in users’ profiles — for targeted advertising purposes. The company has since altered the process, adding human reviews of ad targeting options that don’t cover the 5000 most common terms.

    Permalink to story.

  2. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,283

    The sad thing about these kinds of threats which are often ignored and dismissed all too often turn into the real thing.
    Reehahs likes this.
  3. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Grand Inquisitor Posts: 5,231   +4,374

    Never gonna get you wet

    Never gonna get consent

    Never gonna check my script

    Or debug you
  4. Lurker101

    Lurker101 TS Evangelist Posts: 834   +368

    Facebook and Instagram will now do their best to ensure that rape threats are only sent to the intended victims instead of dealing with the problem of rape threats
    Darth Shiv likes this.

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