Meta’s oversight board has overturned the decision to remove a UK drill music video clip from Instagram following a request from the Metropolitan Police.
The board, which is designed to issue independent judgments on the Facebook owner, said the video ‘Secrets Not Safe’ by Chinx, which referenced gang shooting, was wrongly banned, stating that it “raises concerns about Meta’s relationships with law enforcement”. It said the decision had the potential to “amplify bias”.
The Met police argued the video could “contribute a risk to offline harm”, which the board acknowledged as an “understandable anxiety” because of the high levels of gun and knife violence in recent years in London.
The oversight team, which is made up of journalists, academics and politicians, made recommendations to improve respect for due process and transparency in these relationships.
Although Meta does not need to follow the recommendations, if it does, it could mean that a new layer of scrutiny is added to law enforcement requests to take content down – having wider repercussions for social media firms.
“We do not remove content simply because law enforcement requests it – we take action if content is found to violate our policies or local law,” a Meta spokesperson said.
“As part of our robust review process, we assess whether a request is consistent with internationally –recognized standards on human rights, including due process, privacy, free expression and the rule of law.”