Shadowbanning Is Big Tech’s Big Problem

Source: The Atlantic
by Gabriel Nicholas

“What makes shadowbanning so tricky is that in some cases, in my view, it is a necessary evil. Internet users are creative, and bad actors learn from informed content moderation: Think of the extremist provocateur that posts every misspelling of a racial slur to see which one gets through the automated filter, or the Russian disinformation network that shares its own posts to gain a boost from recommendation algorithms while skirting spam filters. Shadowbanning allows platforms to suppress harmful content without giving the people who post it a playbook for how to evade detection next time. Social-media companies thus face a challenge. They need to be able to shadowban when it’s necessary to maintain the safety and integrity of the service, but not completely undermine the legitimacy of their content-moderation processes or further erode user trust. How can they best thread this needle? Well, certainly not the way they are now.” (04/28/22)