By Tafadzwa Muranganwa
Many people including Zimbabwe shy away from Facebook owing to tons of hate speech on the platform but a top official of the social media platform has urged users people to report such abuse .
This was heard at a ‘policy round-table meeting’ organised by Facebook in collaboration with Misa-Zimbabwe on Friday .
According to Dublin based Facebook Public Policy Associate Manager, Content Policy, Ms Fadzai Madzingira very few Sub-Saharan Africans were reporting cases of hate speech on Facebook despite that the platform has a reporting mechanism,which many users are not aware of.
“It has come to our attention that most people in Sub-Saharan Africa do not report hate speech compared to other regions despite that the platform accommodates a report mechanism,” she said.
However, Chido Musodza, a digital expert with Digital Society of Zimbabwe,argued that this could be attributed to users being unaware of the reporting mechanism and the language factor.
“I think why most people fail to report is because they are not even aware of the report button so there is the need to for the Facebook team to re-look on the platform’s design.
“Language is also another challenge that users face as they are more conversant in their own languages,” argued the digital enthusiast.
Another hurdle Facebook is seized with is how to deal with nudity at a time most Zimbabweans have been agitating for musician Vimbai Zimuto to be censured because of her penchant to post nude pictures on her page.
“Nudity has been one of our hardest challenge to deal with as it is sometimes bordered on culture for example in Kenya there are some tribes which don’t see anything wrong with images of women with bare nipples while some would see it otherwise,”Madzingira.
Facebook SADC public policy manager Emilar Vushe Gandhi (pictured) reiterated the need for users to explore collaborations which they can do with the platform.
“As Facebook users feel free to engage with us on collaborations that we can explore,” said Gandhi.
In Zimbabwe, Facebook is the second mostly subscribed platform after WhatsApp but the proliferation of fake news, hate speech and nudity have been major concerns.