Life Tech Facebook to review handling of videos after Cleveland killing

Facebook to review handling of videos after Cleveland killing

Facebook shooting
The video shows suspect Steve Stephens walking up to an elderly man in Cleveland and shooting him at point-blank range. Photo: Facebook
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Facebook is reviewing how it handles violent footage and other objectionable material after a Facebook Live video of a killing in Cleveland remained on its service for more than two hours on Sunday.

The world’s largest social network plans to look for ways to make it easier for people to report videos and to speed up the process of reviewing items once they are reported, Justin Osofsky, Facebook’s vice president for global operations and media partnerships, said in a blog post.

“As a result of this terrible series of events, we are reviewing our reporting flows to be sure people can report videos and other material that violates our standards as easily and quickly as possible,” Mr Osofsky wrote.

“In this case, we did not receive a report about the first video, and we only received a report about the second video — containing the shooting — more than an hour and 45 minutes after it was posted. We received reports about the third video, containing the man’s live confession, only after it had ended.

“We prioritise reports with serious safety implications for our community, and are working on making that review process go even faster.”

US authorities on Monday widened a manhunt for a murder suspect who, according to police and Facebook, posted a video of himself on the online service shooting an elderly man in Cleveland.

Police said they had received “dozens and dozens” of tips about the possible location of the suspect, Steve Stephens, and tried to convince him to turn himself in when they spoke with him on his mobile phone on Sunday after the shooting.

But Stephens remains at large as the hunt for him expanded nationwide, police said.

The shooting was the latest violent incident shown on Facebook, raising questions about how the company moderates content.

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