Meta has announced more policies against social media abuse and has developed a range of tools to help keep footballers and fans safe on Instagram during the FIFA World Cup Qatar, 2022.
“Over the next month, football fans across the globe will use our apps to connect around the FIFA World Cup. While most will be rooting for the teams and players competing for the championship, unfortunately, there will likely be some who want to be abusive towards others — just like we see offline,” Meta noted in a blog post.
The technology company has clear rules against bullying, violent threats and hate speech.
“We regularly speak to football players, teams and associations around the world — including FIFA — to make sure they know about our latest safety policies and features, and we listen carefully to their feedback. We’re also working closely with teams competing in the World Cup to help their players turn on our safety tools, ” Meta noted.
It has developed new features and updated existing ones to protect footballers and fans from abuse.
These features include: Turning off completely direct message (DM) requests on Instagram, meaning users won’t receive messages from anyone they don’t follow.
They can also choose who can comment on their posts or turn off comments altogether, on a post-by-post basis.
Secondly, the Hidden Words feature which was launched in 2021. When turned on, this feature automatically sends DM requests including Story replies containing offensive words, phrases and emojis to a hidden folder so you don’t have to see them.
” Since launching Hidden Words, more than one in five people with more than 10,000 followers have turned it on. We’re also testing turning it on by default for people with creator accounts, which includes many footballers playing in the World Cup. We remind footballers in the tournament to check these features with a prompt at the top of their Instagram Feed,” said Meta.
The next protective feature is Limits which was also launched last year. When turned on, hides comments and DM requests from people who don’t follow you or who only followed you recently.
Limits is particularly useful for public figures who experience sudden spikes of comments and DMs.
Research shows that after games, most negativity towards footballers comes from non-followers or recent followers.
“When we detect that someone may be experiencing a rush of comments or DM requests, we’ll prompt them to turn on Limits.”
The fast and effective way to shun bullies is by clicking the Blocking feature. When you block someone on Instagram, you can also block any other accounts they may already have, or may create in the future, making it even harder for them to contact you.
Meta is also using artificial intelligence to detect when someone is trying to post a comment that might be offensive and warn them it may be against the rules.
Instagram also recently introduced new nudges that encourage people to pause and rethink before replying to a potentially offensive comment.
These nudges are live now for people whose apps are set to English, Portuguese, Spanish, French, Chinese, or Arabic.
Also, Instagram has a prompting reminding them to be kind in their comment reply and kindness reminder in DM.
The firm clearly stated that it will cooperate with law enforcement in its investigations and respond to valid legal requests for information following their terms of service and applicable law.