News
and Analysis

Onlinecensorship.org, for me, was about drawing attention to how social media censorship disproportionately affects marginalized communities. The communities that could most benefit from protected spaces online are being excluded from participation.

Ramzi Jaber

SHARE IT

Facebook Releases First-Ever Community Standards Enforcement Report

Jillian C. York
May 16 2018

For the first time, Facebook has published detailed information about how it enforces its own community standards. On Tuesday, the company announced the release...


Blunt Measures on Speech Serve No One: The Story of San Diego CityBeat

Jillian C. York
Mar 5 2018

It’s no secret: Social media has changed the way that we access news. According to the Pew Research Center, two-thirds of Americans report getting at least some...


Of course we should be able to use social networks to protest against puritanical views about women’s bodies. And we need to defy the idea that the only acceptable images of women are those selected to suit the male gaze, or that men (or tech firms!) can be the ones to decide whether our nipples are sexual or not.

Leigh Alexander

SHARE IT

Facebook Must Go Further on Transparency

Jun 30 2017

The Onlinecensorship.org responds to Facebook's "hard questions" on hate speech.


Censorship against Palestinians brings Onlinecensorship.org back to its roots

Oct 12 2016

News of an agreement between Facebook and the Israeli government shines a new light on the deactivation of several Palestinian editors' Facebook accounts.


“Having not received a report we aren't sure which Facebook community standard we violated, though I presume the fact we are swearing, wearing latex gloves and suggestively fondling fruit may have something to do with it. I'm not here to say we didn't break any rules; indeed, I don't know if we did because I didn't get an explanation. The thing is, the rules are unreasonable, and inconsistently policed.”

Maeve Marsden

SHARE IT

On Facebook, French Antiracists Fall Victim to Censorship

Sep 21 2016

Among those affected by Facebook censorship are activists in France fighting against racism.


Facebook’s disappearing act

Dec 11 2015

Takedowns in Venezuela suggest its link-blocking function is used for political speech


...before this when content was removed from Facebook users got a notice saying it had been flagged as inappropriate or that it somehow violated terms of service, indicating that the takedown came from another user’s report. Location-based blocking of videos and content for political reasons has usually come from the government via DNS-based blocking or similar practices, never from social media companies themselves.

Marianne Diaz Hernandez

SHARE IT

A hard line for hardliners?

Nov 18 2015

Instagram has taken a hard line on Iranian hardliners using the platform.


Facebook's guide to being a lady

Nov 18 2015

A growing number of people are pushing back on double standards in the community guidelines and terms of service for many online platforms.


Between religion and the right to free expression

Nov 18 2015

Arbitrating between religious values and the right to free expression requires a careful balancing act.


If social media companies control both the medium and the message—without oversight or transparency—they take the leap from a being a ‘walled garden’ to a selectively clear-cut forest.

Jillian C. York

SHARE IT

Social media, news, and the right to know

Nov 18 2015

The idea for Onlinecensorship.org was born in 2011, when Facebook took down a link posted by popular band Coldplay.