Meta activates Elections Operations Centre in India amid Assembly polls

Meta said that in the backdrop of elections, it is even more important for them to detect potential hate speech and prevent it from spreading.

New Delhi: With India entering the crucial Assembly polls season, Meta (formerly Facebook) on Thursday said it has activated its Elections Operations Centre so that it can watch out for potential abuses that could emerge across the platform related to these elections to respond in real time.

Meta said that it has made significant investments in teams and technologies to keep hate speech, misinformation and other forms of harmful content off of the platform for the assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Goa, and Manipur.

“Meta has been preparing for these elections in India; we have a comprehensive strategy in place to keep people safe and encourage civic engagement,” the social network said in a statement.

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“In addition to ramping up our regional language support, we are giving funding support to our fact-checking partners to deliver training programmes for the public and journalists on tools and techniques to verify election information and stories,” it said.

The Assembly elections in Punjab, Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Goa and Manipur will be completed in seven phases with Uttar Pradesh being the first to go to the polls on February 10.

The counting of votes will be taken up on March 10.

Meta said that in the backdrop of elections, it is even more important for them to detect potential hate speech and prevent it from spreading.

“This is an area that we’ve prioritised and will continue working to address comprehensively for these elections to help keep people safe. For India, Meta has reviewers in 20 Indian languages,” said the company.

Meta said that it banned over 2 million accounts on WhatsApp in India in December 2021.

It also took down over 19.3 million pieces of bad content across 13 categories on Facebook and over 2.4 million pieces of such content across 12 categories on photo-sharing platform Instagram in the month of December in compliance with the new IT Rules 2021.

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