Facebook Gets Its Own ‘Supreme Court’: But Will It be Independent from Zuckerberg?

Facebook Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg announced Tuesday the launch of a new independent oversight board to ensure the platform’s “structure and governance.”

In his public letter, Zuckerberg highlighted Facebook’s commitment to ensuring its user’s freedom of expression by removing dangerous content from the site. The tech giant however, has faced increasing scrutiny over what exactly it considers dangerous. Additionally, Facebook created a charter after consulting experts around the world to ensure the board’s independence and balance.

“The board will be an advocate for our community — supporting people’s right to free expression, and making sure we fulfill our responsibility to keep people safe,” Zuckerburg wrote in his letter, “As an independent organization, we hope it gives people confidence that their views will be heard, and that Facebook doesn’t have the ultimate power over their expression.”

Widespread concerns of shadow banning, which has resulted in the censoring of content posted by conservatives, has put Facebook on high alert by lawmakers. Last year, members of the House Judiciary and Commerce committees grilled Zuckerberg over Facebook’s partisanship. Facebook’s definition of hate speech remains blurry and Tuesday’s announcement makes no mention or clarification of its definition.

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