Proposed Facebook-Police Partnerships Could Make Planning Protests Impossible
Ryan Martin / 3 years ago
RT reports that a convention this week in Philadelphia discussed the possibility of a stronger partnership between Facebook and police forces all over the world. This partnership would be organised in a way that allows Facebook to block and/or reveal details on users, at the request of police forces, who are deemed to have posted criminal content or who are involved in criminal activity. The partnership is potentially worrying because police forces may use such a partnership to crack down on protests. Indeed in the USA we’ve seen a trend in recent years for American police forces to not only criminalise protests, but to also use excessive violence to contain them further inflaming what are already emotionally-charged events.
PrivacySOS.org reports that one of the speakers who was unable to attend, Facebook security chief Joe Sullivan who is a former federal prosecutor, was due to hold a speech entitled “Helping Law Enforcement Respond to Mass Gatherings Spurred by Social Media”.
“Is Facebook really working with the police to create a kill switch to stop activists from using the website to mobilize support for political demonstrations?” the PrivacySOS blog asked. “How would such a switch function? Would Facebook, which reportedly hands over our data to government agencies at no cost, block users from posting on its website simply because the police ask them to? The company has been criticized before for blocking environmentalist and anti-GMO activists from posting, but Facebook said those were mistakes. Let’s hope this is a misunderstanding, too.”
What are your thoughts on Facebook and police partnerships? Are they a good idea to make policing more efficient? Or will they be abused by police forces and law-makers to crack-down on democratic protests?
Image courtesy of theagencysd.com