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AI getting better at spying unwanted content, says Facebook

  • Published at 10:19 pm November 14th, 2019
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File photo: Facebook's founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg speaks at the Viva Tech start-up and technology summit in Paris, France, May 24, 2018 Reuters

Facebook has been investing heavily in artificial intelligence (AI) to automatically spot banned content

Facebook on Wednesday said that its software is getting more skilled at spying banned content at the social network, then working with humans to quickly remove terrorist videos and more.

"While we err on the side of free expression, we generally draw the line at anything that could result in real harm," Facebook chief executive Mark Zuckerberg said during a briefing on the company's latest report on ferreting out posts that violate its policies.

"This is a tiny fraction of the content on Facebook and Instagram, and we remove much of it before anyone sees it."

Facebook has been investing heavily in artificial intelligence (AI) to automatically spot banned content, often before it is seen by users, and human teams of reviewers who check whether the software was on target.

Facebook has more than 35,000 people working on safety and security, and spends billions of dollars annually on that mission, according to Zuckerberg.

"Our efforts are paying off," Zuckerberg said. "Systems we built for addressing these issues are more advanced."

When it comes to detecting hate speech, Facebook software now automatically finds 80% of the content removed in a massive improvement from two years ago, when nearly all such material was not dealt with until being reported by users, according to the California-based firm.