"Hate speech" on Facebook

May 2, 2018 |

Tuesday, my social media tech guy and I were burning up the Internet with emails, trying to figure out why a completely inoffensive story I shared on Facebook was suddenly slapped with a banner asking readers to vote on whether this was “hate speech.” I won’t go into whether our emails contained any hate speech directed at the Facebook admins. But turns out they weren’t just targeting me: a new feature that’s still in testing got turned on by mistake, and everyone’s stories were suddenly up for votes on whether they should be flagged as “hate speech.” Fair enough, that explains what happened yesterday, apology accepted.

Now, on to the next question for Facebook: “Are you out of your ever-loving minds?!!”

Do you seriously think that a reasonable way to identify stories containing “hate speech” is to let the general public vote on it? You do realize that includes a huge contingent of people who seemingly have nothing to do with their time but cruise the Internet, looking to be outraged and offended by absolutely everything, from a teenager’s Chinese-patterned prom dress to Apu from “The Simpsons”? These are the same people who riot on campus to censor Ben Shapiro, calling him a white supremacist and a Nazi, even though he’s an Orthodox Jew married to an Israeli citizen of Moroccan heritage.


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Letting all Facebook users have access to the “hate speech” flagging alert system would be as terrible an idea as trusting a gaggle of drunken teenagers with their high school’s fire alarm. This may have been the kind of mistake that turns out to be good in the long run, like accidentally discovering penicillin. Facebook saw the chaos and fury that ensued when every last story on the site, no matter how innocuous, was flagged with a “hate speech” banner. So why would they want to have that happen again, 24/7?

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Comments 1-44 of 44

  • Rebecca Westlake

    05/14/2018 02:17 PM

    I am so sick of this, and we wonder why this generation will not be able to deal with anything. There are no winners or losers today,everyone is winner no matter,what the outcome. What does this teach our children? I like being a female and I believe there should be a time for girls and a time for boys. Sorry Scouts, will the boys sell cookies now??

  • Sue Dillard

    05/04/2018 08:57 AM

    Another reason not to use facebook

  • Betty Mayes

    05/03/2018 05:11 PM

    Decided long ago never to use Facebook,Twitter or any other “social media”every invitation is refused.Why would anyone trust any of these destructive platforms?
    Listen to favorite music on You Tube occasionally,keep up with news using Patriot Post,Huckabee,Heritage,Judicial Watch,etc.I feel social media is destructive to real human interaction.

  • Sharon Gray

    05/03/2018 04:12 PM

    I have disabled my FB account, as I see it as a deep dark hole into which too much time is invested. I don't know how I would justify time spent reading FB to my Lord and my God. I am realizing that I hear a lot of the Christian radio programs that I listen to end with "see us on Facebook and twitter" and whatever else is out there. I. Just. Don''t. Need. It.

  • Robert McFate

    05/03/2018 03:51 PM

    It also must be noted that it is not just persons in the US that use Facebook! Just what is to keep people from other countries that despise the freedom of speech granted to the citizens of the US from trying to shut it down with that in test system?

  • Lynn Morgan

    05/03/2018 02:07 PM

    Wish I could find a Christian social media, don't trust what's out there today, too twisted.

  • Patty Helms

    05/03/2018 01:04 PM

    You have to remember: It's always someone else's fault!! FB isn't going to take responsibility and admit censorship! They can blame readers!

  • Anne Turner

    05/03/2018 12:00 PM

    I am seriously deeply concerned, as are many, about the way things are going. Far leftists are virtually forming a dictatorship. We are getting to the point that a person will have to be very wealthy to risk working on anything Republican. I know so many Dems that have never watched FOX, and refuse to do so. Yes, FOX is more conservative, but they do make a concerted effort to feature people with apposing
    views. For example, I often disagree with Juan Williams, but, I like, and appreciate, the way he expresses his viewpoints. He is a true gentleman and gives well thought out opinions. It is interesting how Liberals feel free to announce their viewpoint to to one and all, but conservatives are quieter, being more sensitive to other people’s feelings. I am taking a class in a seniors leArning program having to do with a French book. The professor announced that Macron emasculated the President by kissing him on both cheeks. She said that is reserved for women. She is of the opinion that Mr. Trump is a laughing stock in France and the rest of the world and that Macron really cannot stand him. If so, the man should get an Oscar. If there is so little respect, why did France and Britain support us in the recent bombing? I have never in my life seen so many self righteous and self serving people.

  • Milly Stepp

    05/03/2018 11:55 AM

    I've said for several years that our country has been destroyed and we are watching it's death throes. I cheer every time that Trump manages to accomplish something but I do not think that we CAN "drain the swamp". I am excited to hear that we are indeed moving our embassy to Jerusalem, we need to honor our only true ally. We as Christians need to realize that our mandate is to spread the good news of Jesus Christ and not try to take over politics in a world the belongs to Satan. I've nearly quit watching TV, we follow Lou Dobbs, Jay Sekulow, Mike Huckabee, Jan Markel, Amir Safarti and we still watch NCIS. I'm getting burnt out on Lou Dobbs but still need to stay informed. Come quickly Lord Jesus.

  • PAMELA S FOWLER

    05/03/2018 11:49 AM

    If that was an accident it makes me wonder what other accidents might happen on Facebook! Like maybe turning on an app that would allow some of their buddies at Cambridge to go through every bit of our information that was meant only for friends or allowing them access to our private messages or family photos. You are right every crazy in the world would love to jump on that bandwagon! Thanks, Mr. Huckabee for keeping them straight.

  • Rebecca Overton

    05/03/2018 11:40 AM

    If the comments in this forum are not a prime example of addictive behavior of misplaced loyalty then I don't know what is. I have been systematically stalked by FB clowns, with them censoring back MANY YEARS, for ridiculous stuff that I decided enough as enough.... NO MORE FB. If I am able to contribute to their collapse by not going on it, great! Its intent is to control the narrative - do not allowed it! Find me on www.gab.air/Sorrel and follow, where it's uncensored...totally!

  • Paticio

    05/03/2018 10:58 AM

    I cancelled my Face Book account for a similar reason. My FB account was censored with no justification. I don’t understand why people continue to use FB, especially those with conservative views.
    This Newsletter should make people aware that FB is also the owner of WhatsApp, and that there is an internal battle for privacy between FB and the founder of WhatsApp.

  • RON RONNEBERG

    05/03/2018 10:49 AM

    Apparently Facebook does not care that millions of users will abandon Facebook in a hurry when they do this. But then again, in their small, utopian thinking that might be what they are looking for.

  • Amelia Little

    05/03/2018 10:37 AM

    I guess fb doesn't have enough staff to review all posts, to eradicate anything suggesting a conservative or religious idea. So, they think they will prevail with such a tactic (sure, they've removed it--for now) knowing there snowflakes about in the fb world who would be more than glad to hit the hate speech button often. And, of course, no one in the fb organization will be able to (or maybe even want to) review those votes to see if they have any real reason to vote this way. Like Diamond and Silk--they don't include hate speech, they don't threaten death on anyone, they don't hold up likeness people they don't agree with, with what looks like beheading of those people. But, gee, they obviously support Trump, and I'm sure what makes their content even more "dangerous" to the community is that they are black women--how dare they espouse conservative views--and even worse, how dare they comment on Trump accomplishments!!!! After all the mealy-mouth responses of Zuckerberg--has the decision about danger to the community been rescinded and are their posts allowed again on fb? Probably not--I put like on their page months ago--and still haven't seen anything from them. So, if (supposedly) I would like their page, their posts would show on my timeline. Conversely, one would think if I didn't like the page, they wouldn't. So, do snowflakes like conservative pages just so they can complain about hate speech in the content? Rational people would just go one with their lives, like pages that conform to their beliefs, and not like the others (or ignore, scroll on by!!!) Of course, snowflakes and many liberals aren't rational people.

  • Cordell Axelson

    05/03/2018 10:04 AM

    Facebook, Do we really need such a thing? Maybe so, but please just run the system and let the folks who use it run their little part without Daddy FB telling them what is good, bad or hateful. Let me decide for myself, and those that are underdeveloped enough to consider anything out of the norm, like wearing a beautiful ethnic style dress get all frustrated with their own hateful lives.

  • Jane Johantges

    05/03/2018 07:02 AM

    This is absolute insanity. Unbelievable!

  • bob roth

    05/03/2018 05:48 AM

    Two things:
    1. Jesus is coming soon.
    2. Jesus is coming soon.
    Blessings

  • Robert Stemmons

    05/03/2018 05:27 AM

    They simply cannot care about right and wrong. I think they want to make their users feel empowered regardless of the outcome.

  • Bonnie

    05/02/2018 11:20 PM

    I’ve reported two things on fb. One was a video of a man showing his bare rear end and the other was a woman who made a comment along the lines of “all republicans should be killed.” FB ruled that neither violated their terms. I was shocked at the time but now I just expect it. It’s ridiculous.

  • Ann Prochnow

    05/02/2018 09:56 PM

    Yes, I saw it too. All I could think of is why would FB do this right after being questioned by our government whether or not they were censoring conservatives? I thought it was awful. Last thing needed in our divided country. I hope FB decides to back off with this.

  • Dee Wilmoth

    05/02/2018 06:12 PM

    THIS is ludicrous! You have the podium to address these issues, and I thank you for using it to speak out!

  • Diane Bujold

    05/02/2018 05:16 PM

    And that is just another reason for me not to miss Facebook after leaving a little while ago.
    Like many of my Conservative friends, I would spend the occasional day or two in 'Facebook Jail' for posting something that offended the snowflakes. It didn't matter that what I posted was always well researched beforehand, was fact based and verifiable, that my comments were always well written, informative, and aside from the occasional "f***" (spelled exactly), I was never abusive or threatening in any way.

    NO, these things didn't matter to Facebook and its super sensitive trolls. It only mattered that they disagreed with my comments, my posts, my pics, my political views.

    FINALLY, the last time they booted me out 'temporarily', Facebook insisted that I show a "clear picture" of my face on my profile page instead of the peace sign I had there. Many people on Facebook have pics other than their own face. Some have their pets as their profile pics, some have a pic of their child, their sports car, a drawing,... all sorts of other pics. I wonder, have they all been harassed as well?

    Anyway, at that point, I had had enough and left (not before sending them the picture of the face of a funny looking dog). I figured, I had posted so much, so often, had been 'friended' by over 400 people over a very short period of time, spread the message as best I could. So I left it to my like-minded friends.

    However, I wish some smart & more balanced individuals would develop a new social media that doesn't censor posters needlessly (or for the reason to silence the voices of reason), and be Facebook's greatest competition in the world.

    Zuckerberg is wayyyyy too Left wing and the people he hires are the same I'm sure. It would be time the sane, the rational and yes, the conservatives had a place to go where Free Speech was still respected.

  • Tina

    05/02/2018 03:24 PM

    Not to mention Zuckerberg.... But he'll have to put every single one of them that participate "not me! That's above my pay grade" lol" ON HIS PAYROLL."LOL" What kind of IDIOTI Parson or "AI" came up with this? I'm sure we all will be hearing more about this!!! And GOD BLESS you and your Family Mr. Huckabee! Love all of your family's hard work!

  • Cynthia Duke

    05/02/2018 02:23 PM

    I think it's a ploy designed to get Zuckerberg out of the hot seat for censoring Conservatives. He doesn't seem to realize that it won't work.

  • Max Attebery

    05/02/2018 02:20 PM

    Governor, we must remember Facebook is run by far left liberals. The will do whatever they can to silence anyone who does not agree with them. Thank you for doing what you do.p

  • David Kelley

    05/02/2018 01:33 PM

    Was it a mistake or a test? Easier to ask forgiveness than permission.

  • Robert Sutton

    05/02/2018 01:18 PM

    As noted (or will be) in Gov. Hickabee's favorite blog, www.UberThoughtsUSA.com, there are two real issues, at 50,000 feet, that Facebook simply did not get to the point of considering. Otherwise this would not even have been pre-alpha tested before being tossed in the BASH (the great Bay Area Scrap Heap) of stupid ideas. First, of course, is that the data -- the input from those brilliant types that use Facebook -- would be susceptible to people like me (although I actually do not use FB at all) simply labeling everything as "hate speech" and producing results to analyze that are beyond corrupted. The second, then, is that Facebook surely did not think through what they would have done thereafter even if the data had been accurate. A collective determination that a post was "hate speech" would have to lead to an enforceable and defensible action against the writer, like removal. Then FB would have to explain why person A's post was removed but person B's post was not. They would have to hire 10,000 thought police to enforce that, and 1,000 lawyers to defend the inevitable thousands of lawsuits. Facebook is rolling in money, and we do need more jobs, but I don't think they'd go for that.

    It's hard to imagine that this was not already considered before a line of code was written, but we're talking about Facebook, where no one is over 30 and they have far too few mental cubbyholes (reference here -- http://uberthoughtsusa.blogspot.com/2015/02/the-cubbyhole-theory-of-maturity.html) to be able to think that far out.

  • Caroline

    05/02/2018 01:17 PM

    I deleted my FB. The only thing I miss are the birthday notifications. Ha

  • Carolyn waldrop

    05/02/2018 12:58 PM

    At first I said the only reason I am on facebook was to see pictures of grandkids who live with ex-daughter in law, and other family members
    But now, it is to be as POSITIVE and ENCOURAGING as I can be, posting scriptures, posting a weekly live video devotion, and just plain old PREACHING about my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!!

  • Carolyn waldrop

    05/02/2018 12:54 PM

    At first I said the only reason I am on facebook was to see pictures of grandkids who live with ex-daughter in law, and other family members
    But now, it is to be as POSITIVE and ENCOURAGING as I can be, posting scriptures, posting a weekly live video devotion, and just plain old PREACHING about my Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ!!

  • Lynn Hoyt

    05/02/2018 12:21 PM

    This just proves that good common sense is not in the mind set of the far left!

  • Janet Massa

    05/02/2018 12:18 PM

    I don’t understand how we have “relinquished” our right to free speech so easily. I can’t believe how our platform to express opinions and share stories is turning into a prison of sorts. Free speech is now outlawed here. I hear that FB is going to “rate the news” and I’m sure that the only outlets that are objective and non-partisan are going to be labeled as hateful and censored.Perhaps we should express our disillusionment by deleting our FB and Twitter accounts. If Twitter is truly flagging, banning or censoring tweets of Conservatives, Christians and Republicans, I will dump it. This is not George Orwell’s 1984. This is not Mecca, Moscow, Beijing or Nazi Germany. This is the United States of America and as far as I know the Constitution and Declaration of Independence are still in effect. We have to squelch this snowflake, hurt feeling, “you can’t say that here”, thought and speech police atmosphere that is forming. It is a slippery slope and once we slide down that hill away from freedom it can’t be regained easily.
    Janet Massa

  • Jan M Lane

    05/02/2018 12:17 PM

    I agree wholeheartedly and posted something similar yesterday when I discovered the "hate speech" option. Anyone at all will be able to have anyone banned for absolutely no reason. FB will lose many accounts if this feature is implemented.

  • Sherry Terry

    05/02/2018 12:16 PM

    Hello Gov. Huckabee. I understand being frustrated with FB. I'm near the point where I will happily eradicate it from my life. There are few articles that are not a waste of time reading. I've gone back to getting my news from Fox, your show and the local news.

  • Caitlin

    05/02/2018 12:03 PM

    It's baffling to me that liberals can't find the irony in their lust for censorship. "Hate speech is not free speech." "They go low and we go high." Blah blah blah. However, when Barbara Bush's death is celebrated and some no name comedian slams Sarah Huckabee Sanders, all I hear from them is crickets. They say/do the most vile things I've ever seen or heard yet they fail to see the plank in their own eye and desperately hunt for a way to shut the mouths of conservatives. My message to them, facts are facts whether they hurt your little feelings or not.

  • Sue Meyer

    05/02/2018 11:52 AM

    I have reported material posted that I found offensive or what I would call pornography, and 90% of the time I get thanked for my report but that said material in within FB community standards. What standards?

  • Pamela Mixon

    05/02/2018 11:43 AM

    Facebook is going to self destruct if they don’t quit messing with politics.

  • Esta Fay Smith

    05/02/2018 11:38 AM

    The sad and scary thing is that many people will label anything conservative or Christian as “hate” speech.

  • Ann Ford Longacre

    05/02/2018 11:27 AM

    1) That is so dumb and out of touch with real Americans who have jobs that require them to be away from their computers 24/7.
    2) One idea of someone's hate is different from others' ideas.

    Facebook is on a downward spiral.

  • Carolyn Bailey Tarr

    05/02/2018 11:17 AM

    Mike Huckabee,
    You are correct. The “hate speech” flag would be a ridiculous idea. After all can’t we now be arrested for hate speech? Talk about prison overcrowding, we’d all eventually end up there!! I’d hit the “Angry” button every time I’d see a hate speech flag! Totally ridiculous!

  • Fred Hinderer

    05/02/2018 11:08 AM

    The mob makes the rules...

  • Tricia Kennemer

    05/02/2018 11:01 AM

    That's a convenient alternative to censor conservatives in a "hands off" we didn't do it kind of way.
    FB: "hey, we let our readers decide"
    Me: well then, I'm rushing over to Occupy Democrats, Media Matters etc. to flag them as hate speech.
    Guess what...no hate speech flag option.

  • Jennene Reagor

    05/02/2018 10:59 AM

    I saw this and actually did mark the worse of posts as hate that were just that and wondered what was going on....then it all disappeared and it was said that it was clinch in the Facebook system....

  • Judy Nihiser

    05/02/2018 10:45 AM

    Has Facebook completely lost it? They allow so much "Hate" against OUR President they should be ashamed to ask that question!