September 27, 2022

Kenya: Content moderator sues Meta over working conditions

3 min read

The petition, also filed against Sama, a local outsourcing company of META, alleges that workers moderating Facebook posts in Kenya have been subjected to unfavorable working conditions, including irregular pay, inadequate mental health. Help, breaking up unions, and violating their privacy and dignity.

The lawsuit, filed by one person on behalf of a group, seeks financial compensation, ruling that outsourced moderators have the same healthcare and pay scale as meta-employees, that is, unification. Rights should be protected, and an independent human rights audit of the office.

A Meta spokesperson told Reuters: “We accept responsibility for those who take the content for Meta seriously and call on their partners to provide industry-leading salaries, benefits and Provide support. Regularly conduct independent audits to ensure that our partners meet the high standards we expect. “

Sama declined to comment before the trial but denied earlier allegations that its employees were unfairly paid, that the recruitment process was vague, or that it had mental health benefits. Were insufficient.

Case-specific requests for action are more granular and broader than those requested in previous cases, and may extend beyond Kenya.

“This could have serious repercussions. Facebook will have to show a lot about how it conducts its moderation process,” said Odanga Madung, a fellow at the Mozilla Foundation, which specializes in Internet rights. Waqf is a global non-profit organization based in the United States.

Globally, thousands of moderators review social media posts that may feature violence, nudity, racism or other offensive content. Many people work for third party contractors instead of tech companies.

Meta has already undergone scrutiny on the working conditions of content moderators.

Last year, a California judge approved a 85 million settlement between Facebook and more than 10,000 content moderators who accused the company of protecting them from psychological trauma by exposing them to graphic and violent images. I have failed.

Facebook did not acknowledge the wrongdoing in the California case but agreed to take steps to provide a safe working environment for its content moderators, who are employed by third party vendors.

Violent videos

Kenya’s lawsuit was filed by Daniel Motaung, who was recruited in 2019 from South Africa to work for Sama in Nairobi. Motaung says he was not given details about the nature of the work of reviewing Facebook posts before his arrival.

Motting remembers the first video was about beheading. Annoyingly Libran – always rational, easily hurt emotionally, very passionate and maybe a little too intense.

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“I have been diagnosed with severe PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder),” Motaung told Reuters. “I’m living … a horror movie.”

Mutawang’s lawyers said that Meta and Sama created a dangerous and degrading environment where workers were not given the same protections as employees in other countries.

“If people in Dublin can’t see the harmful material for two hours, that should be the rule everywhere,” said Morsing Motimi, a lawyer for Motaung. “If they need a psychiatrist on call, it should be applied everywhere.”

Shortly after joining SAMAA, Motaung sought to form a union in Nairobi to advocate for the company’s nearly 200 workers.

He was fired shortly afterwards, in what he and his lawyers say was an attempt to form a union. Union rights are enshrined in the Kenyan constitution.

Samaa has not commented on the allegation.

Motting experience was first revealed in an investigation published by Time magazine in February.

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