Gavin Sullivan engages with Meta about their online ‘terrorism’ and ‘violent extremism’ policy

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Earlier this week, Gavin Sullivan was consulted by senior policy managers at Meta (in the US and UK) to provide input into potential reforms to their Dangerous Individuals and Organisations Policy. The existing policy – which has long been kept secret by Meta, but was leaked last year by The Intercept – prohibits the ‘praise’, ‘support’ and ‘representation’ of designated groups and individuals, going further than the other platforms in restricting online expression of those deemed associated with ‘terrorism’ and ‘violent extremism’.  This has led to the policy being criticised by human rights and civil society organisations for being overbroad in scope, by prohibiting online speech without a nexus to real-world violence. Meta’s Oversight Board has also consistently called for the policy and associated guidance (about how praise and support are interpreted) to be made more transparent. Gavin is expected to engage further with Meta on this issue in Autumn 2022. The governance of terrorism and extremism online is a key empirical focus of the infra-Legalities research project.