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The Wire officially retracts story on Meta bias content moderation

— The Wire retracts story it did on Meta having a bias content moderation policy.
— The news outlet claims that it was likely a victim of deception.
— Meta had rejected the story from the onset and the sources the outlet cited also denied communicating with it.

The Wire has officially retracted a controversial story it published on Meta content moderation, concerning a removed Instagram post. The independent new outlet cited discrepancies in the evidence it used to back up the claims of the article.

“Our investigation, which is ongoing, does not as yet allow us to take a conclusive view about the authenticity and bona fides of the sources with whom a member of our reporting team says he has been in touch over an extended period of time,” its statement read. “We are still reviewing the entire matter, including the possibility that it was deliberately sought to misinform or deceive The Wire.”

If you have been following the story, you likely recognise that the outlet took the best possible way out of the situation. Otherwise, it would have been facing a lawsuit from the tech giant. For now, there is no confirmation on whether Meta would sue but the news company had unnecessarily let the drama drag on too long.

Likely, it was enjoying the exposure the case gave it, but it could put it in the crosshairs of the social media company.

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The issue started after the media outlet had accused Meta of giving Indian politician, Amit Malviya, special pemission to take down a post. Granted, the reason that the platform gave for taking down the post was for sensitive content, which the post did not contain. However, many believed that it was a glitch by the moderation algorithm.

Instead, The Wire claimed that it had received emails from Andy Stone, Meta’s policy communications director, and Ujjwal Kumar, an independent expert, confirming that the politician had influenced the decision. However, after both Stone and Kumar denied sending any such email, the outlet still left the story live.

Now, it says that it has found some inconsistencies with its sources and retracted the story. It could pose as a victim of the hoax as well, to escape vengeance from the tech giant.

The Wire officially retracts story on Meta bias content moderation
Statement from The Wire on the Meta Investigation. Image Source: Twitter/@@thewire_in

Meta fought the accusation because of its larger repercussions. There has been debate among policy makers about the power that big tech has over information and if it lets The Wire‘s claim stand, it could stand to lose the ability to moderate content at all. Also, it could even affect others like Google and Twitter.

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Onwuasoanya Obinna

A reader of books and stringer of words. Passionate about Science and Tech. When not writing or reading he is surfing the web and Tweeting.