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May 29, 2013

Did Facebook respond correctly to #FBrape?

Netizens debate the line between free speech and hate speech.


A A smartphone user shows the Facebook application on his phone in the central Bosnian town of Zenica, in this photo illustration, taken May 2, 2013. (REUTERS/Dado Ruvic)

A targeted campaign condemning graphic posts about violence against women on Facebook prompted the social network to re-evaluate its policy on hate speech. 

After the #FBrape campaign generated 60,000 tweets and 5,000 emails, Facebook issued a statement on Tuesday saying their criteria for acceptable posts was "outdated," and their system for monitoring hate speech had "failed". In addition to updating their guidelines and team training, Facebook will also consult directly with women's groups and may consider requiring creators of "cruel or insensitive" content to use their real identities.