Who, exactly, is asking Facebook to censor things for us?

facebook-10-big1Today in Betteridge headlines: "Should Facebook Block Offensive Videos Before They Post?"

Could these services go further in policing such content? We asked Twitter, and a company spokesman referred us to its media policies. "If you upload media that might be considered sensitive content such as nudity, violence, or medical procedures, you should consider applying the account setting: 'Mark my media as containing sensitive content,'" the policy reads. "We do not mediate content. All content should be marked appropriately as per our guidelines." In other words, the company doesn't want to block the content at the source. But it will remove certain content if users complain, and in some cases, it will flag such content before they click on it.

Whenever you see a story like this, ask yourself a question: to whom is the question (in this case, a demand for censorship) being attributed? If there is no clear attribution, the author of the story (or their editor) is the source.

A lot of journalism is not "false balance" so much as the occupation of a controversial or threatening fringe position that makes for dramatic or timely reading.

I'm sure there are people asking for Facebook to pre-screen everything—I would just rather they be written about directly, rather than turned into some abstract, implicitly well-meaning cultural presence behind the question itself.