We're asking the wrong questions of YouTube and Facebook after New Zealand

It's time for a real conversation about the infrastructure and incentives that Big Tech provides far-right extremists.

Late last Saturday, Facebook shared some dizzying statistics that begin to illustrate the scale of the online impact of the New Zealand massacre as the gunman's video spread across social media.

According to the social network, the graphic, high-definition video of the attack was uploaded by users 1.5 million times in the first 24 hours. Of those 1.5 million copies of the video, Facebook's automatic detection systems automatically blocked 1.2 million. That left roughly 300,000 copies ricocheting around the platform to be viewed, liked, shared and commented on by Facebook's more than two billion users.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Straits Times on March 21, 2019, with the headline 'We're asking the wrong questions of YouTube and Facebook after NZ'. Print Edition | Subscribe