How Many 'Oversight Boards' Does It Take to Dim a Light?

How Many 'Oversight Boards' Does It Take to Dim a Light?
AP Photo/Jeff Chiu, File

Very soon, Facebook’s much-anticipated “Oversight Board” will be open for business. The 20-member board, funded by Facebook, but composed of “outside experts and civic leaders,” says it will “[e]nsur[e] respect for free expression, through independent judgment.” 

The Board’s rulings will have the power to overturn Facebook and Instagram’s moderation decisions and will be binding as to the content at issue. Rulings must be implemented “unless doing so could violate the law.” As neither the Board’s site header nor URL mention either Facebook or Instagram, one wonders whether it might someday oversee all content curation. But in the meantime, Facebook seems to hope that adding another layer of moderation — a board of authoritative supermoderators — will quash cause concerns about its biased content curation practices.

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