Exposed: Facebook Secretly Using Chinese Style User Reputation Score

According to a Washington Post report, Facebook is secretly assigning its users a reputation score, which is eerily similar to China’s famous Social Credit system. The latter is used by Chicoms to assign a “social rating” to each Chinese citizen. The social rating is based on the Chinese government data about the citizens’ social and economic status. Citizens with poor social rating scores are shamed on a public list and they can be denied flights and trains, among other things.

In a very disturbing reflection of China’s Orwellian social-credit system, Facebook has began rolling a reputation score for its users. The Facebook system predicts a user’s  so-called trustworthiness on a scale from 0 to 1. Binary, that is, i.e. you’re either trustworthy or not. WaPo‘s report notes that the reputation score used by Facebook is aimed at combating “fake news”, and the company has been working on it for the past year. The information was revealed by Facebook product manager Tessa Lyons, the person responsible for “fighting misinformation” on the social media platform.

Using this reputation score, Facebook is measuring the “credibility” of users, yet the company claims it’s not meant to be an absolute indicator of a user’s trustworthiness. Here’s Tessa:

“For example, if someone previously gave us feedback that an article was false and the article was confirmed false by a fact-checker, then we might weight that person’s future false news feedback more than someone who indiscriminately provides false news feedback on lots of articles, including ones that end up being rated as true. I like to make the joke that, if people only reported things that were [actually] false, this job would be so easy! People often report things that they just disagree with. 

However, the way this system works is very mysterious and opaque, and this “feature” is built-in the system, i.e. Facebook can’t tell us how they’re assessing our behavior, so we can’t influence their algorithms. It looks like Facebook is taking dystopian shows too seriously:

Why not just send electric shocks to the keyboard when you don’t like something I type? It would make it easier.

 

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