Pinterest’s Transparency Report may show smaller figures, but it highlights the social network’s vigilance in removing illegal content promptly

Content moderation is one of the most crucial aspects of social media platforms. Social networks are often held accountable for allowing the spread of misinformation, or for the spread of content related to violence, hate speech, racism, child pornography, abuse, etc. So, there is always pressure on these platforms to tighten up their content moderation policies and ‘control’ what is being posted on their platform. Now, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter - these are some tech giants that are always going through strict scrutiny and that is why they have to present their transparency reports often. But recently, Pinterest has also published its Transparency Report. It is a smaller platform in comparison to users and the scope of other larger platforms, but it has been facing some content moderation issues too.

At the beginning of this year, an investigation by OneZero discovered that Pinterest was hosting images that were related to child abuse and exploitation. These pictures would not appear in normal search results, which means that they were carefully hidden from the search queries but were still accessible on the platform. This prompted the site to take some action, and Pinterest has reportedly submitted over 1638 cases of content related to child pornography and abuse to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children.

In the recent Transparency Report, Pinterest has pointed out that albeit in small numbers, but they have been receiving reports and they are taking actions accordingly too now. The platform has already around 442 million monthly active users, and it has seen exponential growth especially during the coronavirus pandemic. But as the number of users grows on any platform, the instances of controversial content posting also increase, and this brings the platforms in a tight spot.

So, through this Transparency Report, Pinterest has tried to explain how they received reports and how efficiently they removed that content from their platform in the first 6 months of 2020.

The report is divided into two categories. The first category shows the results from the US alone. According to this report, Pinterest received around 46 official reports and information requests related to a controversial and illegal content, and its action impacted around 55 accounts in total.

The second category of this report shows the results from the international front, in which Pinterest received around 919 reports and requests from six government agencies. Most of these requests were submitted from Russian agencies, and it is not known what type of content they were related to.

This report shows that Pinterest may not be as large as other social platforms, but even it is taking stricter actions to moderate content in their best capacities. Other platforms should also take a lesson from Pinterest because tight content moderation is the need of the hour! No one can afford more misinformation or any other form of volatile, divisive, or hate content to be freely floating around and impacting millions of people!


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