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[liberationtech] Can anyone help me get my account unblocked on Facebook?!
azrak_khan at hotmail.com
Fri Jul 3 00:09:58 PDT 2015
I think Facebook real name policy is very hypocritical and is negative against activists working in regions like yourself and ours in Pakistan. We also have a list of Facebook users and activists pages that have been blocked on reports of government supported trolls.
I am not sure if you can unblock your ID by submitting a letter only as a user is required as per their policy to submit a photo identification document.
Anyone on the list have any experience with it?
Date: Thu, 2 Jul 2015 21:57:13 -0600
From: p.inna at lycos.com
To: liberationtech at lists.stanford.edu
Subject: [liberationtech] Can anyone help me get my account unblocked on Facebook?!
I am a Ukrainian Canadian activist and my country of origin is at war. I created several groups on Facebook, including Russian Speaking Canada for Peace, a political forum, which debunks Kremlin run propaganda, and has over 1800 members. I also run fundraisers on Facebook to help orphaned children evacuated from war-torn areas of Ukraine. I am on Facebook since 2007 and don’t pretend to be someone I am not: the birthday, contact info, photos are all mine and my friends know who I am. When Russia invaded and annexed Ukrainian territory Crimea, I changed my legal last name to a pseudonym, to protect my family and people I work with outside social media from bullying by Putin supporters, since the threats and bullying online were/are abundant.
Yesterday, on Canada Day, Facebook blocked my account (obviously following a report from someone who tries to stop my activism) and demanded to confirm my name by submitting my ID online. Instead of ID I submitted a letter saying that I get regular threats and feel rather uncomfortable sending my identification documents via insecure online channels. I did add that I can show them to a legitimate representative or even in Skype, but they can’t expect a photocopy of a driving license or social insurance card to be e-mailed or submitted through some suspicious form online.
Only last month Facebook has come under fire for biased political blocking of accounts of Russian opposition and Ukrainian activists who are constantly cyber-attacked by the paid army of Putin trolls. The petition, which has already collected close to 15000 signatures, states: “Facebook indiscriminately reacts to these reports by blocking the accounts of prominent Ukrainian public figures and Russian dissenters. Lately, the bans have become so frequent that we can now claim that Facebook has become an efficient tool of the Kremlin.” https://www.change.org/p/facebook-stop-political-blocking-on-facebook
Facebook "real name" policy has also come under scrutiny multiple times and has been called discriminatory. Petition by performers, which collected over 40000 signatures asserts: “Facebook tells us that "it looks like you're not using your real name," before requiring us to change it. We cannot emphasize enough that Facebook is a poor arbiter of what is or isn't a "real name." Performers with legitimate-appearing names get locked out of their accounts while people with account names like "Jane ICanBeBadAllByMyself Doe" go without scrutiny.” https://www.change.org/p/facebook-allow-performers-to-use-their-stage-names-on-their-facebook-accounts People using aboriginal names were discriminated by Facebook too. http://www.cbc.ca/news/trending/facebook-flags-aboriginal-names-as-not-authentic-1.2970993
Just few days back, on June 30, Zuckerberg explained: “If your friends all call you by a nickname and you want to use that name on Facebook, you should be able to do that,” he said. In this case, he said, the policy “should be able to support everyone using their own real names, including everyone in the transgender community.”
So it is not clear anymore, is Zuckerberg lying to Facebook users or is he simply ignorant of what his staff does. When will Facebook start treating its users with basic respect, when will it stop political blocking and discrimination?
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