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30 Jun 2019

Brian Fung, CNN Business

Facebook announces civil rights task force to fight meddling in 2020 election and census

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Facebook has launched a civil rights task force and an election monitoring center to guard against interference in the 2020 presidential campaign and census, the tech giant said Sunday. The Facebook task force, chaired by COO Sheryl Sandberg, follows pressure from civil rights groups and minorities who say the company has not done enough to combat anti-democratic tactics such as voter intimidation and suppression. The US election team will be established by the end of the year... [The] announcement came as a leading civil rights expert released her second interim report in a multi-year audit of the social media company... [which] said Facebook has improved in the way it incorporates civil rights concerns into its products, but raised questions about the long-term durability of those efforts.

... Facebook promises to roll out a range of additional policies... Advertisements trying to persuade users not to vote will soon be forbidden, for example. The company will restrict how housing, credit and job advertisers may target users so as to prevent discrimination by age and gender, which has repeatedly been a problem on the platform despite Facebook's promises to address it. And it will launch a new policy in the fall banning any content aimed at misleading users about the upcoming census.

Part of the following timelines

USA: Civil rights groups call on Facebook to stop use of its platform to spread hate & violence & to ensure greater accountability of leadership

USA: 2020 Presidential election, business & human rights