Facebook’s Fucked Up Algorithms

It happens every couple of days. One of my friends posts something about how they weren’t allowed to post something on Facebook, accompanied quite often by a screenshot of the piece that got blocked, and I have a mix of feelings about that. For one, it looks like they did get to post it, because I’m looking at it. I’m aware, though, that Facebook made them take a couple of extra steps to do that, one which somebody less computer adept wouldn’t know how to take, and so it is suppression. Sometimes I can kind of see Facebook’s point. There’s a painting, I think it’s called “Birth of the World” and it’s a legit piece of art hanging in a museum somewhere, but it’s also a big, hairy vagina right in your face. Every so often, I’ll see that posted, accompanied by the message “Facebook won’t let me post this!” More often, I don’t get Facebook’s point at all. Sometimes, it makes me feel a bit jealous, which is irrational. I post political shit all the time, some of which probably offends some people, but I’ve never been banned. Am I that insignificant? Well, maybe so. Facebook’s a big place and we’re all spitting in the ocean.
This morning, it was a friend who posted a comment saying that the Pan-American highway is not contiguous, you have to get around the Panama Canal by some other means of transport which, I’m pretty sure, is true unless they’ve built a bridge or tunnel when I wasn’t looking. Facebook said it was spam, which I suspect is bullshit. Spam is something that’s sent out to millions of people at once. Spam is something that is sent over and over again. Spam is generated by a machine, and I happen to know for a fact that this particular friend is not a machine. He has some other faults, but he is most definitely not a machine.
So, Facebook got it wrong, which they often do. They either need to fix those algorithms, hire some human beings, establish an appeals process, or some combination of all three. As the traffic warden of the information highway, Zuckerberg is doing a seriously poor job.

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