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Facebook adopts new policies to combat coordinated intimidation and harassment of public figures

Facebook adopts new policies to combat coordinated intimidation and harassment of public figures

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg.
Drew Angerer / Getty




Facebook said the policy was created to prevent coordinated mass attacks against public figures.




New content violations like "severe sexualizing content" were added to Facebook's harassment policy.




The platform consulted free speech advocates, politicians, and other stakeholders on the policy.


A week after scathing congressional testimony from whistleblower Frances Haugen, Facebook announced on Wednesday it will expand its current harassment policies to better protect public figures, such as politicians, journalists, human-rights defenders, and celebrities.According to Facebook, the policy expansion would remove any "objectionable content" targeted at public figures, including posts, direct messages, comments, networks of accounts, and private pages or groups coordinating mass posting."We're always trying to strike the right balance between protecting them from abuse and allowing open dialogue about them on our apps. Our bullying and harassment policy differentiates between public figures and private individuals to enable freedom of expression and legitimate public discourse around those in the public eye," Facebook said in a news release Wednesday.Feedback led the company to add several new content violations to its existing harassment policy, including:
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