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Former Meta Engineer Sues Over Firing Related to Gaza Content Handling
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By Anthony Haddad
Published 1 week ago on
June 5, 2024

A former Meta engineer is suing the company, alleging he was fired for addressing bugs that suppressed Palestinian Instagram posts related to the Gaza conflict. (Shutterstock)

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A former engineer for Meta — the company that owns Facebook, Instagram, and WhatsApp — has accused Meta of bias in handling content related to the Gaza conflict, Reuters reports.

The former engineer alleges in a lawsuit that he was fired for trying to fix bugs that suppressed Palestinian Instagram posts.

Ferras Hamad, a Palestinian-American who worked on Meta’s machine learning team since 2021, filed the lawsuit in a California state court, claiming discrimination and wrongful termination following his dismissal in February.

He alleged that Meta was systematically biased against Palestinians, deleting internal communications about relatives’ deaths in Gaza and investigating the use of the Palestinian flag emoji while ignoring similar use of Israeli or Ukrainian emojis.

Meta did not respond to a Reuters request for comment. The lawsuit comes amid ongoing criticism from human rights groups about Meta’s content moderation concerning Israel and the Palestinian territories.

Hamad’s termination followed an incident involving an emergency procedure to address content restrictions on Palestinian Instagram posts, which he flagged as irregular.

Despite receiving conflicting guidance and confirmation from his manager that addressing the issue was part of his job, he was later told he violated a policy by working on an account of someone he allegedly knew personally, a claim he denies.

Read more at Reuters

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Anthony Haddad,
Multimedia Journalist
Anthony W. Haddad, who graduated from Cal Poly San Luis Obispo with his undergraduate degree and has an MBA at Fresno State, is the Swiss Army knife of GV Wire. He writes stories, manages social media, and represents the organization on the ground.

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