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Facebook: 1.5 million New Zealand shooting videos have been deleted

On the morning of the 16th local time, New Zealand shooting suspect Brenton Tarant appeared in court for trial.



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A total of 49 people were killed and more than 40 injured in a shooting incident on Friday (15th). Tarant described himself as attacking "retaliation for immigrants (aggressors)". He is currently accused of murder and the prosecution said it would lodge more charges.

When being escorted to the court by the police, Tarant smiled at the live media and madly made a "white supremacy" racist gesture.

The gesture is derived from the English initials W and P of "White Power." Among them, the straight three fingers symbolize W, and the two fingers that hold the hand and the palm of the hand constitute P.

The atrocities of the suspects shocked the world, but what is even more shocking is that the gunmen can actually broadcast their killing videos on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and other online platforms, and quickly spread.

American political and academic circles have criticized these platforms for their poor control of live broadcast functions, and the response speed after the emergence of violent video is slow. The role of these Internet giants in this violent incident has also raised widespread questions.

According to Reuters, the video of the shooting on Friday was first broadcast live on the Facebook platform, and then shared on Twitter, YouTube, Whatsapp, Instagram and other platforms. The Gunner used the GoPro camera to shoot the crime and used a mobile app called LIVE4 for live streaming. This app is loved by extreme sports enthusiasts, allowing users to upload videos directly to the Facebook platform via a camera that they carry with them.



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Facebook, Twitter, and YouTube all said they deleted the original video after the attack, but in the next few hours, people can still find videos that others have forwarded.

"We are deeply saddened by the shooting incident in Christchurch," a Twitter spokesperson said in a statement. “Twitter has a rigorous process and a dedicated team to manage such emergencies. We also work with law enforcement to investigate as needed.”

Facebook also deleted the video and said it has been working hard to remove content that praised the terrorist attack.

“New Zealand police informed us shortly after the start of the live broadcast that we quickly deleted the video and the murderer’s Facebook and Instagram accounts,” said Facebook Australia and New Zealand policy director Mia Galick in a statement.

Later in the afternoon of March 15, Galick said in another statement that Facebook has been adding videos that violate its policies to the "internal database, which allows us to detect and automatically delete video copies when uploading again."

There are also some Youtube users who say they can still find videos even after 12 hours of the event, although YouTube has previously said it deleted the original video.

Legitimate reports from news organizations are often displayed when searching on YouTube, but if users filter results by upload date, they can still easily find the video.

It is worth noting that, according to British Sky TV, before the shooting of the gangster, he also urged viewers to subscribe to the popular YouTube channel PewDiePie. A similar "killing live broadcast" incident occurred in the United States in 2015. In August of that year, a reporter and a videographer from CBS News Network were shot dead in the live broadcast. Then the live video was rumored on social media such as Youtube, causing heated discussion in the community.

After the “Facebook Data Disclosure Event” broke out last year, all three social platforms have been “named” by the US Congress: Facebook CEO Zuckerberg and COO Sandberg, Twitter CEO Dorsey, and Google (owned by Youtube) CEO Pachai has been summoned to Capitol Hill to promise parliamentarians to improve cybersecurity.

On March 15, Facebook shares fell 2.46%, Twitter rose 0.61%, and Google parent company Alphabet Inc fell 0.19%.

Facebook has previously spent a lot of money on content auditors.

The Verge News Network of the United States believes that both live video and "confessional books" indicate that the murderer is as attractive as possible to the public. Especially in the "confession book", the murderer also mentioned a lot of online games of the current fire. The article said that before the Internet became popular, the mastermind of large-scale attacks might find ways to attract the attention of the media, but now through social media, it can easily and quickly attract a large audience.



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Previously, Facebook, Youtube and other platforms used algorithms to identify bad content, but often missed some "tampering maps" and "cut size" videos. Last February, Facebook had planned to hire 20,000 content auditors at the end of the year to identify bad information.

Despite a large-scale manual review, Facebook still did not find this "killing live broadcast." In this regard, Bloomberg bluntly said that it was "squinting."

Lucinda Creighton, a senior adviser to the US non-profit organization Anti-Extreme Program, said in an interview with CNN, "These technology companies basically don't take this (monitoring bad content) as a priority. They may say 'really bad', But they never tried to stop this from happening."

According to the People’s Daily, in recent years, live streaming services have become the core of many US social media companies’ growth strategies, but the use of live streaming of violent content by users has also appeared more frequently, raising public concerns. In 2017, a Thai father lived on Facebook and killed his daughter. Before Facebook deleted this video, it has reached 370,000 hits.

Scholars in the field of Internet research have pointed out that in controlling the spread of violence, self-discipline by the Internet platform alone is not enough. Mary Anne Franks, a professor of law at the University of Miami, said, "Facebook has known from the outset that its live streaming service has the potential to encourage and magnify the worst aspects of humanity. It must face the fact that it is covered with blood. In 2016, when Facebook announced the expansion of its live video business, Zuckerberg said it was to support people's "most private, emotional, original, and heartfelt ways of communication."

It is worth noting that on such a key node, Facebook has reported the departure of executives. On the 14th, Facebook announced that Chris Cox, one of the company's entrepreneurial "elders", chief product officer, and Chris Daniels, vice president of WhatsApp business, will resign.

According to CNBC, Cox officially resigned on the 11th. He was one of the first 15 engineers of Facebook. He was considered a close friend of CEO Zuckerberg and participated in the construction of a series of core products of the company. For example, the News Feed stream, the application hosting the Facebook main site.

Cox wrote a long article on the personal FB homepage, revealing that the reason for his departure is related to the company's new development direction. In the future, Facebook will focus on an encrypted, interoperable information dissemination network that requires more interested leaders. Facebook CEO Zuckerberg also wrote a long-form statement saying that Cox disclosed the departing members before 2016 and wanted to do something else.

In addition, Daniels, director of Facebook's instant messaging software WhatsApp, will also leave. This person has served as the company's director of business development, and the once-responsible Internet.org project has helped more than 100 million people access the Internet.