Custodians of the Internet

Platforms, Content Moderation, and the Hidden Decisions That Shape Social Media

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Tarleton Gillespie: Custodians of the Internet (2021, Yale University Press)

296 pages

English language

Published Oct. 30, 2021 by Yale University Press.

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"Most users want their Twitter feed, Facebook page, and YouTube comments to be free of harassment and porn. Whether faced with 'fake news' or livestreamed violence, 'content moderators'--who censor or promote user-posted content--have never been more important. This is especially true when the tools that social media platforms use to curb trolling, ban hate speech, and censor pornography can also silence the speech you need to hear. [The author] provides an overview of current social media practices and explains the underlying rationales for how, when, and why these policies are enforced. In doing so, [the author] highlights that content moderation receives too little public scrutiny even as it is shapes social norms and creates consequences for public discourse, cultural production, and the fabric of society. Based on interviews with content moderators, creators, and consumers, is...for anyone who's ever clicked 'like' or 'retweet.'"--

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