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Facebook Oversight Board Begins Accepting Appeals

On Thursday, the Oversight Board announced that Facebook and Instagram users can now submit appeals on content removal to the Oversight Board. Facebook can also refer cases for decisions on content existing on Facebook or Instagram. Decisions made by the Board will be independent and binding upon Facebook.People will also have the opportunity to appeal to the Board on content they want Facebook to remove.

The Oversight Board is a global body that will make independent decisions on whether specific content should be allowed or removed from Facebook and Instagram. Board Members are drawn from around the world with backgrounds in free expression, digital rights, online safety and other related fields.

Users can submit an eligible case for review through the Oversight Board website, once they have exhausted their content appeals with Facebook. Facebook can also refer cases to the Board on an ongoing basis, including in emergency circumstances under the Expedited Review procedure.

After selection, cases will be assigned to a five-Member panel with at least one Member from the region implicated in the content. No single Board Member makes a decision alone.

Cases will be decided upon using both Facebook's Community Standards and Values and international human rights standards. In addition to now accepting cases, the Board is able to recommend changes to Facebook's Community Standards alongside its decisions.

Each case will have a public comment period to allow third parties to share their insights with the Board. Case descriptions will be posted on the Board website with a request for public comment before the Board begins deliberations. These descriptions will not include any information which could potentially identify the users involved in a case.

The Board expects to reach case decisions and Facebook to act on these decisions within a maximum of 90 days.

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