Nearly two weeks after the Christchurch shootings, Facebook has finally removed hate site Islam-free NZ.
Auckland woman Jenny Keown says her husband alerted Facebook to racist images on the site immediately after the Christchurch attacks.
However, a second Facebook page with with its log as a gunsight on the Beehive and features anti-immigrant tracts and a conspiracy theory suggesting police were complicit in the mosque massacres, remains online. Pictures from the group can't be published in the Herald.
"The [name-redacted] pages we looked at do not violate our policies," a Facebook Australia-New Zealand spokesman told the Herald last night.
Keown told the Herald on Monday, "My husband reported the Islam Free New Zealand group and the several of the group's racist images to Facebook following the attack.
"He tried to get Facebook to remove a photo of a bird holding a sign saying 'How to S**t On Muslims' but Facebook's automatic generator said that it didn't meet criteria for objectionable content. How is that not objectionable?"
It took five days for Facebook to send its form response, which said the content was not objectionable and described how it could be muted or blocked by an individual user who did not want to view it.
The Herald asked Facebook to explain its decision to keep Islam-free NZ online the same Monday, March 25. Last night, a Facebook spokesman contacted the Herald to say the group had been removed.
"Our Community Standards are designed to create an environment where people feel free and safe to express themselves. We remove content that violates those policies whenever we become aware of it," he said.
The Facebook spokesman did not immediately respond to a follow-up question about whether the delay was down to resource issues or a backlog of complaints, policy debate or another issue.
Separately, overnight, Facebook made a global announcement overnight that it will now block white nationalist and white separatist posts.
Another member of the public sent the Herald an example of the shooter's video that could still be found on Twitter.
A spokesman for the Privacy Commissioner said, "Our office received a helpful briefing from members of Twitter's Global Public Policy team today on its response to the Christchurch mosque shootings. There have been no similar discussions with Google or YouTube as yet."
Open letter snubbed
After the Christchurch shootings, Spark, Vodafone and 2degrees sent an open letter to Facebook, Twitter and YouTube-owner Google, asking them to do more to clamp down on inappropriate content.
"it is disappointing that our chief executives have not yet received a formal response from our open letter last week, reinforcing the widely held view that these platforms do not take their civic responsibilities to prevent objectionable content being uploaded seriously enough," Vodafone NZ spokesman Richard Llewellyn told the Herald yesterday.
Last night, a Facebook Australia-NZ spokesman said, "At this point, we have nothing to share publicly on the open letter."