Iran protests: Facebook removed tweets calling for the assassination of Khamenei in error, board decides
An oversight committee for Facebook’s parent firm claims it was incorrect for the site to take down a post with a well-known anti-Iranian leader protest chant. Iran protests: Facebook removed tweets.
The usage of “marg bar Khamenei” (literally, “death to Khamenei”) violated rules, according to Meta moderators in July.
The board disagre, stating that the term not constitute a genuine threat of violence and was frequently use figuratively to indicate “down with Khamenei.”
Additionally, it made suggestions “to properly safeguard political expression.” On Meta’s platforms, which also include Instagram and WhatsApp, the Oversight Board independently decides whether content should be allowed or prohibited.
Before access to Meta’s social networks was restricted in September in reaction to widespread protests against the religious establishment and Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, millions of Iranians relied on them for news.
The death in detention of a young woman apprehend by morality police for reportedly wearing her hijab “improperly” set off the ongoing turmoil, during which crowds heard shouting the Persian “marg bar Khamenei.”
Authorities have labeled the demonstrations “riots” and used deadly force in response. According to the Human Rights Activists’ News Agency, at least 519 protestors have been murder and 19,300 have been detain thus far (HRANA).
Following what the UN has criticiz as “unfair trials base on coerce confessions,” four inmates have put to death.
According to the Facebook Oversight Board’s decision, Meta “must do more to protect freedom of expression in the Iranian context, and enable the use of rhetorical threats.”
“Because of the relentless repression of free speech by the Iranian regime, online communities have emerged as important dissenting forums. It is crucial that Meta supports user voices in these circumstances.”
It also stated that Meta should have warned moderators not to remove content that had the slogan “marg bar Khamenei” in light of the anti-government demonstrations that took place on Iran’s National Day of Hijab and Chastity in July of last year.
As this instance demonstrates, by failing to do so, political discourse aim at defending women’s rights was silence.
It also encouraged Meta to add the standards used to assess when rhetorical threats against heads of state were acceptable in its rules on violent material.
Following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine the previous year, Meta briefly let its users in several nations to demand the demise of Russian President Vladimir Putin.