United States snubs Christchurch Call tech pledge, but says it endorses 'overall goals'

Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern with French President Emmanuel Macron with whom she is hosting the summit

Mustafa Yalcin Anadolu Agency GettyPrime Minister Jacinda Ardern with French President Emmanuel Macron with whom she is hosting the summit

Ardern was set to join other world leaders in launching the "Christchurch Call" to curb online extremism at an worldwide meeting in Paris on Wednesday.

In the announcement, Facebook said it will be practicing a "one strike" rule, where accounts violating serious policies will be restricted from using Facebook Live for certain periods of time.

Facebook has said it removed 1.5 million videos globally that contained footage of the attack in the first 24 hours after it occurred.

Ardern also said prior to the ban, New Zealand had "pretty permissive gun legislation", and while she thinks guns are necessary in some instances, she felt the laws went too far. The company did not specify which offenses will be covered by the policy or the length of suspensions for rule-breaking users.

Facebook also said that it was partnering with The University of Maryland, Cornell University, and the University of California, Berkeley to figure out a way to identify videos of events like the Christchurch mosque attack that are edited in a way to make them now hard for Facebook's systems to identify.

New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern is leading an effort to secure worldwide commitments to prevent the sharing of extremist content online.

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Ardern and Macron will lead a meeting in Paris today that seeks to get world leaders and chiefs of technology companies sign a pledge to eliminate violent content online.

"Tackling these threats also requires technical innovation to stay ahead of the type of adversarial media manipulation we saw after Christchurch", Facebook's vice-president of integrity, Guy Rosen, said in a blog post. Despite those efforts, the tech giants were unable to stop the spread of the Christchurch videos, prompting government officials across the world to call for more regulation.

The company pointed to current community standards that prohibit spreading terrorist propaganda on the social network.

The firms said they would update their terms of use to "expressly prohibit the distribution of terrorist and violent extremist content". In Sri Lanka, authorities there grew so concerned about social media - and the spread of potential violence - that they shuttered access to Facebook and other sites after attacks on churches there last month. "To be honest, I do not understand the United States", she said.

While not having Facebook Founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg at the meeting is regrettable, "what's fundamental is for Facebook to agree to this plan", Ardern told Le Monde in an interview published Wednesday. But the First Amendment's protections for free speech have left many policymakers reluctant to regulate social media even when those companies have erred.

Rosen explained that Facebook has historically banned rule-breaking users from its entire platform, but that its new policy seeks to set rules that would specifically bar people from the Live service.

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