On September 19, the Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society hosted a public lunch talk with Monika Bickert, the Head of Global Policy Management at Facebook. The public event was followed by a meeting at which members of the Berkman Klein Center community explored broader research questions and topics related to the challenges of keeping tabs on the daily social media interactions of hundreds of millions of people.
Later in the afternoon, members of the Berkman Klein Center community came together for additional discussion about content moderation broadly, and related questions of hate speech and online harassment. About 80 community members: librarians, technologists, policy researchers, lawyers, students, and academics from a wide range of disciplines attended.
The afternoon included presentations about specific challenges in content moderation by Desmond Patton, Assistant Professor of Social Work at Columbia University and Fellow at the Berkman Klein Center, and Jenny Korn, an activist-scholar and doctoral candidate at the University of Illinois at Chicago and a Berkman Klein Fellow.
These researchers explained just how difficult it can be to moderate content when the language and symbols used to convey hate or violent threats evolve in highly idiosyncratic and context-dependent ways.