This is not a good example of screening being impossible to do, or being too subjective to nail down. Facebook moderated the video on largely neutral terms; not asserting that abortion was right or wrong, just that the claims the video made were scientifically false. It should be the type of fact-check that Republicans can get behind: objective and verifiable.
This specific story isn't that Facebook can't fact-check, it's that ultimately Facebook is willing to define neutrality based on what Lawmakers are complaining about at the moment. It is specifically Facebook's commitment to "neutrality" in this case that makes it easy for biased groups to manipulate the platform.
I'm pretty sympathetic to the idea that increased calls for global moderation may have unintended side effects, and on average I tend to disagree with people who conflate neutral tools with complicity. But this particular story is definitely evidence in the opposite direction -- that Facebook is not opinionated enough, and that a commitment to avoiding even the appearance of bias can lead companies to make ineffective, gutless moderation decisions.
No, for me it's that what constitutes "neutrality" shifts with the powers that be, and in this case it shifted quickly; because abortion is an issue that facebook doesn't care about, it was willing to go with a scientific consensus, but when a politically powerful person insisted that the scientific consensus wasn't "neutral" it abandoned it.
We're watching the process of moderation in real time, not watching the corruption of a process that has never existed: of neutrality creation that is entirely independent of power. The solution isn't that Facebook isn't cleaving the the standards you hold to be objective enough. That's just kicking the can down the road. Get enough power to dominate Ted Cruz, and you can get him to delete the video yourself.
edit: I'm not against Facebook moderating their platform, but they should have all of the editorial responsibilities and liabilities that come with that. Which, instead of this process happening informally, puts it into the justice system where standards can be publicly agreed upon.
I read the first part of your post as an argument that the actual definition of neutrality is prone to bias and corruption, and that politicians can't be trusted to define what is and isn't neutral.
Given that reading, I don't understand how adding legal liability would help keep Ted Cruz from subverting moderation efforts or redefining what neutrality means. Wouldn't that just give him more ammo to throw at Facebook when he claims that they need to to adhere to a constantly changing standard?
to be such they would have had to (for example) been in the midst of debating the topic, and said something like "but a real abortion..." where their operating definition of "abortion" was effectively changed.
Why are HN moderators allowing this account to post comments on this forum?
Here is a previous comment on this account:
>tBut the progressive revolution has entirely skipped over the struggles of non-Jewish whites merely because of their skin color.
and another one:
>Let's just be honest here, the only people experiencing fall-out from the Epstein case are not Je-yank
It is very very concerning that HN moderators police tone but not substance and allows accounts like this one to proliferate conspiracy theories.
The idea that if you see something unmoderated, it must mean that the moderators secretly agree with it, is a monster of a non sequitur. What's actually happening is that we only see a portion of what gets posted to HN, and we can't moderate what we don't see. That's why the site guidelines ask you to flag bad comments and, in egregious cases, to email firstname.lastname@example.org. Fortunately, another user chose to follow the site guidelines and did so.
Please see https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=21003570 for more.
Yes. That's what happens when you provide a self-publishing system. You agree to that contract whether you want to or not.
And it's not just this comment. It happens all the time.
>That's why the site guidelines ask you to flag bad comments
I literally cannot do that. Surely you know that.
>Fortunately, another user chose to follow the site guidelines and did so.
You don't think it's a problem that only one other user decided to _email_ you a problem. Doesn't that indicate a problem with the site culture?
I'm one person, a consumer of this site. Not a moderator. I called attention to it using the one capability given to me on this site. Saying "that's not good enough" is extremely asinine when I literally am not able to do anything else on the site.
But you can always email us, as anyone can. The fact that you didn't shows that you're not truly concerned about keeping HN free of the abuse you're complaining about. Rather, you're using other people's abusive comments as an excuse to post abusive comments of your own, smearing the community—who don't support the dreck that shows up here, just like it shows up everywhere on the public internet—and trying to undermine it. When you imply that moderators somehow support the dreck, I don't believe you're doing so in good faith. Anyone who's been around HN as long as you have knows that's false. Rather, the name for what you're doing is poisoning the well. That is another form of trolling.
Would you please stop creating accounts to break HN's guidelines with? This site is for people who sincerely want to use it as intended, and the intended use is laid out clearly at https://news.ycombinator.com/newsguidelines.html: intellectual curiosity and kind, thoughtful discussion.
>When disagreeing, please reply to the argument instead of calling names. "That is idiotic; 1 + 1 is 2, not 3" can be shortened to "1 + 1 is 2, not 3."
>Please respond to the strongest plausible interpretation of what someone says, not a weaker one that's easier to criticize. Assume good faith.
I haven't touched a single post of yours, and indeed it is impossible for me downvote _anyone_ with the current status of my account.
Pretty poor theory for a pretty poor person.
do you have examples of this happening?
My question is about the timing(why now?) and not on "who is the good/bad guy" here.
There has been a shift in the Supreme Court with the appointments under Trump, particularly the replacement of Justice Kennedy, widely regarded as having been the “swing” vote on the issue, which makes it widely perceived to be more likely that existing precedent sharply limiting permissible government restrictions on abortion would be struck down, should a case involving the issue reach the Supreme Court.
Consequently, many state legislatures that are dominated by the faction opposed to abortion are implementing sharp restrictions on abortion in state law in an effort to get sued over them, get the case to the Supreme Court, and have the existing abortion rights regime abolished.
There's some more, but that's the single biggest factor.
A lot of those other factors seem to be failing for President Trump right now, so his administration and other Republican supporters are leaning into abortion as a topic for the next election.
The general election is not until early November 2020, but Democrats are getting a ton of air time now with their primary process, and Republicans don't have much success to sell right now other than all the federal judges they've confirmed. Basically these judges have been the #1 focus of the Republican-controlled Senate for the past 2 years.
There are a lot of reasons they have been focused on judges, but abortion is the easiest way to talk about it with large groups of Republicans.
I was thinking that our politicians would use a technique to say or do something controversial at convenient time so all media and public would be distracted from the actual thing happening. This smells like such a thing but it is probably what you said;
“Through Obamacare, the current Administration has promoted the notion of abortion as healthcare. We, however, affirm the dignity of women by protecting the sanctity of human life. Numerous studies have shown that abortion endangers the health and well-being of women, and we stand firmly against it.” [emphasis added]
So, yeah, Trump’s “group”, stands “firmly against” abortion.
Weather Reporter: The sun will rise at 6 AM Tomorrow
Fact Checker: False. The language talking about sun rise is implying that the sun rotates around the earth, and that has been known to astronomers to be false for centuries.
In her video, Lila Rose is saying that abortion as defined as intentionally killing the fetus is not medically necessary.
From the captions on the video: "Now, you could perhaps do an early delivery if she's experiencing or she has a very severe condition that you need to deliver that baby early, but in that situation you don't go in with a needle or forceps to destroy that baby before birth. You give that baby a fighting chance, and that is not an abortion."
She is saying that the baby may die as a consequence of early delivery, but the goal is early delivery, not the destruction of the baby.
Fact check says "Certain medical conditions such as placenta previa and HELLP syndrome can make abortion a necessary medical procedure in order to prevent
the mother's death."
My guess that Lila's response would be that that it is the early delivery that is saving the mother's life, not the abortion. The mother's life would still be saved if the baby survives through appropriate medical care.
I don't know if Lila is Catholic, but a lot of her reasoning seems to fall under the "Principle of Double Effect."
"Classical formulations of the principle of double effect require that four conditions be met if the action in question is to be morally permissible: first, that the action contemplated be in itself either morally good or morally indifferent; second, that the bad result not be directly intended; third, that the good result not be a direct causal result of the bad result; and fourth, that the good result be "proportionate to" the bad result. Supporters of the principle argue that, in situations of "double effect" where all these conditions are met, the action under consideration is morally permissible despite the bad result."
The argument is that doing a delivery with intention to save the mother's life is good, even if it has the consequence that the fetus dies, since the death of the fetus was not the intention, and thus would not be called an abortion, since the fetal death was a secondary effect and not the primary intended effect.
The issue with the fact check is that the fact-checkers were so eager to label something they disagreed with as false, that they did not appreciate the nuance.
Many people including ob-gyns do not consider surgery for an ectopic pregnancy an abortion.
This description, unlike the quoted material that precedes it, is an inaccurate application of the principle of double effect on a number of levels.
The principle of double effect does not make an act that results in death through intentional acts with the actual and known-in-advance-to-be-likely effect of necessarily licit (even if done with good intent) or even not-homicide (nor does it make them not-abortion if it involves termination of a pregnancy and the incident death of the embryo) it makes them indirect homicide (and indirect abortion) rather direct homicide/abortion. Indirect homicide (including indirect abortion) is (as the material you quote before your summary notes) only licit when committed for proportional reasons (which would apply to termination of an ectopic pregnancy where there is a moral certainty that both the mother and embryo.)
That is—critically to the attempt to justify the videos creative definition of abortion and thesis that abortion is never medically necessary that depends on that definition, by using the principle of double effect—under the principle of double effect, termination of an ectopic pregnancy (with the accompanying and certain, but not actively sought as either an ends or means, death of the embryo) to save the mother’s life would generally be a licit (in part because of medical necessity, though that alone would be insufficient to make it licit) act of indirect homicide and abortion, not not-abortion or not-homicide.
She in fact is.
Unfortunately, we occasionally end up with something like this, where it _is_ interesting from a public/private policy perspective, but the political aspects are too strong and overcome that.
Religious conflict has been on a huge downswing for like 300 years.
The alternative would be models like the UK, Germany or Denmark, where although churches have state representation, the reverse is also true and the state has effectively securalised and reigned religious institutions in.
edit: "whatever you want" supposed to be figure of speech, seemingly this must be pointed out.
Few sites are totally unmoderated either, I doubt gab is totally unmoderated either. They all take down spam, illegal stuff, and harassing/abusive people afaik. If not I dont see how their communities would last very long.
Since when? Probably depends on which board you're talking about I guess.
I doubt there are any "anything goes" social networks in existence.
The point is that the attitude I was responding to is extremely entitled. You're not entitled to use Facebook. You're not entitled to post about abortion without a fact check from Facebook, that is up to them. If you don't like it, leave Facebook.
I'm tired of the public square narrative, as if Facebook is the only forum for discussion on the Internet. If Facebook blocks my speech, I can talk about it on Twitter, or Hacker News, or Gab or chan boards (using these as an example), or my own website, or any other number of places for discussion.
Facebook is a private company.
Sure, you can post on your website (that nobody would discover), or Gab (which is blocked in Apple and Android stores), or 8chan (which is down)...but for better or worse people still use Facebook so people still complain about it.
Suggesting legal measures against Facebook, "perhaps we need not only a separation of church and state, but also of tech and state", is entirely different and completely unwarranted on the basis of them "regulating (or interfering with) speech" as seen in the submission.
I'm not a user of Gab and unfamiliar with their apps, but I assume it can be accessed through a standard web browser (Safari, Google Chrome).
"Since 1977 there have been eight murders, 17 attempted murders, 42 bombings, and 186 arsons targeted at abortion clinics and providers across the United States. In some cases, a small group of clinics have been targeted multiple times."
But... now that we know abortion clinics only murder a few hundred thousand, that makes them like twice as good as they used to be. That's how this works, right?
Note that the Catholic heirarchy is, in fact, opposed to all forms of conception that don't involve a sex act between married partners, including homologous artificial insemination within marriage.
> However, within the 'Catholic bubble', fertility clinics probably get as much ire.
They really don't; they rarely get mentioned outside of fairly academic discussions of the relevant theology, even by most of the people within the Church that engage in intense advocacy on abortion and/or family issues.
They do get some ire by extremists on the opposite side of the heirarchy’s position than the general society, the types that put out pamphlets or go on Catholic radio using arguments like “clones—and IVF babies—have no souls” (seriously). But they don't get a lot of attention in mainstream circles. If a couple asks their pastor about it, they’ll probably have the official positioned mentioned, but unlike abortion it's not something you're likely to hear mentioned in a Sunday sermon or as the focus of a heirarchy-led public advocacy campaign.
The Catholic heirarchy views that no differently than other natural death, which, while it might be something better to reduce, is not an active moral wrong the way homicide (including, in the view of the heirarchy, direct abortion) is.
(I say “heirarchy” rather than “Church” here because the evidence suggest that the mass of the faithful, the body of the Church, aren't particularly in line behind the heirarchy on this issue—polls in the US, for instance, fairly consistently see virtually no difference in distribution of political views on abortion between Catholics and Americans generally.)
-One person lamented discourse relating to abortion "going downhill".
-Someone pointed out that its hard to say its going downhill when its been happening since the 70s.
"SO YOU THINK ALL PEOPLE WHO ARE PRO LIFE DO THIS?"
Its simply impossible to have those inputs and create this output without having a massive, obvious agenda. Maybe take that elsewhere?
But like literally none of this happens in the case of premature enough babies who often need intubation, and yet who -- if intentionally killed -- would trigger a murder investigation
Anyway, I find people's thinking around the morals of abortion to be quite fluid . The termination rate of pregnancies with chromosomal abnormalities far exceeds the percentage of people who identify as "pro choice" and cannot be explained simply by pro-choice people being more prone to fetuses with such conditions.
There are plenty of pro-choice arguments, but this is not a very good one.
Coercion is often justifiably used when lives are at stake. For example, the government might "force" sick people in a quarantine given an epidemic outbreak. What you want to show is that the fetus is not a person and, therefore, doesn't have the same rights as the mother. This is difficult, but not impossible -- although there are some concessions that need to be made along the way.
Says the person who has the need to argue about what women can and can't do with their bodies while not having a uterus himself.
I can make these kinds of arguments by analogy or generalization. So I hope you can see how (and more importantly why) we can think about morally-difficult problems like abortion even though we're not women, war even though we're not soldiers, etc.
The discourse in your country doesn't seem to revolve about facts any more. At the moment it's just political. I'm wondering why this is on HN at all. We all know whatever is going to be said about this topic is going to be political eventually.
(wow fastest downvote ever, I just posted this, like 5 seconds, and it already got a downvote :)
Edit: to be clear, by "feel-good" I do not mean "positive," emotionally, just not subject to the same level of useless vitriol common elsewhere--which is where this thread is going.
"France requires political ad to include disclosures" is, of course, slightly less punchy as a news item.
I'm not sure your characterization is quite correct, however. If I'm reading point 10 correctly — and that's not certain, as neither my French nor Google Translate is quite up to the task — it sounds as though the determination that it was an issue-advocacy ad and therefore inappropriate to broadcast was made largely on the basis of its psychological effect on women who had already chosen not to give birth to babies with Down Syndrome.
In effect, then — again, assuming I read it correctly — the assertion made above is essentially correct: the ad was not allowed because it would upset women who had aborted Down Syndrome babies.
The alternative you present is equivalent to arguing that campaign-sponsored ads are prohibited in the US, since they will be found illegal if presented without required notices.
Surely you can see that this is impossible. There is no component of a video like this which has "nothing to do with politics."
You would also do well to actually read the article, especially the screenshot of the fact-check. You'll notice that the fact-check, per my post, simply addresses the facts of the issue and does not make a single political statement.
Edit: You also modified my statement when quoting me, making it more ambiguous than I had written it. Please be sure to quote people accurately in the future.
Can you please provide data that supports this statement?
>Untrue facts about guns for example are never pointed out.
Using absolutes such as "never" in a statement like that can often be a bit of a stretch. Like my last question, do you have proof that Facebook has never fact-checked a single gun video?
What kind of data do you believe would be necessary for a negative claim like this?
Do I have proof there is no teapot between the Earth and the moon? No. Do you believe this means you can dismiss my claim that there isn't a teapot floating between the Earth and the moon?
It's literally as simple as a total count of left-leaning and right-leaning posts/videos/photos that have been fact-checked.
You'd have to also determine the respective frequencies of left-leaning and right-leaning posts/videos/photos containing falsehoods for those numbers to be useful.
I am correct, because you cannot find a single video on Facebook which posits the existence of said molemen. Therefore, Facebook is censoring those videos.
In more detail, “liberal” in US politics has a lot of conflicting uses and is almost a useless term. The US Democratic Party is dominated (though somewhat less so today than a few years ago) by a neoliberal, centrist (arguably center-right) pro-capitalist faction, which tends to also be where the most consistent support for gun control in the Democratic Party, or mainstream US politics more generally, is.
It’s next biggest faction (the closest mainstream US politics has to a “left”) is a center-left social democratic faction (some of which self-identifies as democratic socialist); this faction has a mix of people who are less supportive of gun control than than the neoliberal faction of the party, and those that favor more extreme gun control, and everywhere in between.
The actual American left, which is largely outside of the major parties, is also quite mixed on gun control.
Saying that's not true isn't a political position, even if the falsehood it's debunking is one.
Unfortunately, logical arguments in an emotionally charged topic are usually heard as inflammatory, as many logical married individuals can attest. So this political tug-of-war response should come as no surprise.