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Meta Oversight Board Announces Targeted Staff Cuts

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The Meta Oversight Board is to implement "targeted cuts," reducing its workforce.

According to the report in The Washington Post, the board, which functions as Meta's "supreme court," has informed some employees their jobs are at risk.

The reductions will primarily impact staff supporting the board's 22 experts.

It includes academics and lawyers who make decisions regarding content moderation across Meta's platforms, including Facebook, Instagram, and Threads.

Meta's Oversight Board was established in late 2018 and became operational in October 2020. 

Initially funded with a $130 million grant from Meta, it received an additional $120 million in 2022.

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In a statement to Business Insider, Stephen Neal, chair of the Oversight Board Trust, confirmed the planned cuts. 

He said the cuts allow the board "to further optimize our operations by prioritizing the most impactful aspects of our work that are delivering results for millions of people who use Meta's platforms around the world."

Neal said Meta remains committed to the board's success and would continue funding its operations.

The reductions will hit staff supporting the board's 22 experts

A Meta representative said the company "remains committed to the Oversight Board, which operates independently from the company, and continues to strongly support its work."

These layoffs might affect Meta's ability to combat misinformation across its platforms.

This is a concern particularly pressing with the 2024 US presidential election on the horizon. 

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The Financial Times reported that regulators are already worried that Meta's moderation efforts are insufficient to address political advertising risks.

Meta and other Big Tech companies face mounting pressure to effectively police online content.

This is amid growing threats from AI-generated content and deepfakes 

The rise of accessible artificial intelligence tools has led to a surge of fabricated visual content,.

This is providing challenges to platforms to manage these risks.

Meta recently announced plans to expand its "Made with AI" label to a broader range of content following an Oversight Board recommendation. 

This label will automatically be applied to audio, video, or images when industry-standard AI indicators are detected or manually when users self-identify their content as AI-generated.

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