Image Credits: Facebook (edited)
Facebook introduces ‘religious content warnings’
SILICON VALLEY, CA – Facebook have launched a new ‘anti-extremist religion’ initiative to help warn people of what they label as ‘objectionable content’ on their platform.
A number of users have reported seeing a message which indicates that they might have been exposed to harmful religious content, and offers counselling and support.
Facebook confirmed the ‘Inquisition Initiative‘ pilot was an attempt to help site administrators identify users or content that breached Facebook’s existing bans on salvific material and will be used to prevent ‘Christian radicalisation‘.
“This pilot is part of our larger work to assess ways to provide resources and support to people on Facebook who may have engaged with or were exposed to religious, specifically Christian, content or may know someone who is at risk,” said a Facebook spokesperson in an emailed statement.
“We admit that we could have done more in the past to protect people from joining dangerous, gospel-driven movements and so we are now taking more assertive initiatives.”
“We are also partnering with anti-faith NGOs [non-governmental organisations] and atheist academic experts in this space and will release more information in the future.’
The spokesperson told Damascus Dropbear that recommended support groups are being lined up, including Life After Faith, an advocacy group that helps people leave extreme bible-believing churches.
Some church leaders and academics, although expressing concern with the pilot, indicated that they weren’t overly worried.
“The thing about the gospel is, the more you try and suppress it the more it gets spread,” said Popular Christian historian and apologist Dick Johnson.
“We all need a warning, I’m just not sure if Facebook have latched onto the right side on this one.”
“I’d personally be more concerned about those of my Facebook friends who haven’t heard Jesus’ message of salvation.”
“Facebook have got one thing right though, the gospel is dangerous – historically it has turned entire political and social systems on their head.”
It is further reported that Facebook are seeking partnerships with a number of other support groups, including Unborn Again, Baptism removal services and Post-Conversion Therapy International.