the court has ruled
Facebook's independent "Supreme Court" is out with its first rulings — and at least in this initial batch of cases, it has mostly sided against the company.
The Facebook Oversight Board, which will review appeals of Facebook's moderation decisions, on Thursday revealed its first five rulings, and in all but one case, the group decided to overturn Facebook's decisions, NBC News reports.
First, the board overturned Facebook's removal of a post that "commented on the supposed lack of reaction to the treatment of Uyghur Muslims in China" because it "did not reach the level of hate speech." Next, it overturned the removal of photos that included uncovered nipples because they were allowed for raising breast cancer awareness.
It also overturned the removal of a post featuring an alleged Joseph Goebbels quote, with the board finding the post "did not support the Nazi party's ideology." Finally, the removal of a post that "included claims that a cure for COVID-19 exists" was overturned, as the board determined Facebook hadn't "demonstrated the post would rise to the level of imminent harm." The only one of the five cases in which the board actually upheld's Facebook's decision had to do with a hate speech case, in which the user posted a "demeaning slur" about Azerbaijanis.
This first set of decisions, which Facebook says are binding, is particularly significant because the board was recently handed by far its biggest case yet: the suspension of former President Donald Trump. The oversight board will decide in the coming weeks whether Facebook was right to suspend Trump in the wake of the deadly Capitol riot — and after these first rulings were revealed, NBC News' Dylan Byers wrote, "If I'm Donald Trump, I'm cautiously optimistic about getting my Facebook account back right now."