A study conducted by Buzzfeed shows that acts of violence numbering at least 45 have been streamed on Facebook Inc (NASDAQ:FB) Live since December 2015. These acts of violence include torture, child abuse, murders and shootings. According to Buzzfeed the average number of acts of violence on Facebook Live is two each month.
Two years ago the founder and chief executive officer of Facebook, Mark Zuckerberg pitched the Facebook Live feature as a new method of communicating for the social media company’s one billion users. The feature allows users to broadcast live from the Facebook app and consequently stream video to their friends and followers. Though in the vast majority of cases the service has been used positively such as when sharing memories with friends, in certain cases it has been used for negative purposes such as streaming violence.
The live streaming of violence on Facebook is a well-known problem which has hit headlines in the last couple of months as some users try to outdo each other with even more grisly acts. There is also a debate on how prevalent the live streaming of violence on Facebook is. This is because tracking usage on Facebook Live is not easy because of the large number of users on the social network.
Earlier in the year a report by the Wall Street Journal concluded that acts of violence numbering more than 50 had been broadcast on Facebook Live which is higher than what the investigation by Buzzfeed came up with.
In May Zuckerberg disclosed that the social network was planning to recruit about 3,000 people who would be charged with policing video with a view to preventing unsavory content finding its way on to the social network.
“We’re working to make these videos easier to report so we can take the right action sooner—whether that’s responding quickly when someone needs help or taking a post down,” Zuckerberg said in a posting on Facebook.
According to Buzzfeed, an impact may already have been made by the new hires as the streaming of violent acts reduced drastically in May.
On Monday shares of Facebook Inc rose by 1.48% to close the day at $152.87.