The Facebook Oversight Board and its Trump test

Press/Media: Blog


Facebook exercises extraordinary power over individuals in the digital world, and  the grave consequences of what is said on Facebook can easily spill into the physical world too. There is no doubt that Facebook is one of the most powerful arbiters of online speech. As Klonick puts it, “through its ‘semipublic rules’ called ‘Community Standards’, Facebook has created a body of ‘laws’ and a system of governance that dictate what users may say on the platform”. It is hardly surprising that Facebook has faced immense pressure to become more accountable. So, in 2018 Facebook announced plans to create an independent oversight body to review content decisions underpinned by a robust legal framework. Now, we do have such a forum in place, and it is called  the Facebook Oversight Board (“Board”). Explaining the need for the Board, Facebook itself has said that as its “community grew to more than two billion people, it became increasingly clear to the Facebook company that it shouldn’t be making so many decisions about speech and online safety on its own. The Oversight Board was created to help Facebook answer some of the most difficult questions around freedom of expression online: what to take down, what to leave up and why.”

Period4 Feb 2021

Media contributions


Media contributions

  • TitleThe Facebook Oversight Board and its Trump test
    Media name/outletVoelkerrechtsblog
    Media typeWeb
    PersonsRishi Gulati