The money goes to employees who viewed and deleted drastic content on behalf of the network. They are said to have been insufficiently protected against psychological stress.
Facebook plans to pay its content reviewers a total of $ 52 million in compensation for mental stress from their work. The settlement provides for so-called moderators involved in a class action lawsuit to receive $ 1,000 each, according to the preliminary settlement filed at a High Court in the San Mateo District of California. Affected individuals who have been diagnosed with mental illness in connection with their Facebook activity can expect medical treatment and compensation of up to $ 50,000. The comparison is said to benefit more than 10,000 previous and still active moderators in the US states of California, Arizona, Texas and Florida.
External contractors filed a lawsuit against the online social network in 2018. They accused Facebook of not protecting them adequately from the serious psychological stresses that come with their work. Content reviewers are repeatedly exposed to drastic content such as child abuse, beheading, acts of terrorism, cruelty to animals and other disturbing images and videos.
Facebook said the company is grateful to the people who are doing this important work to create a safe environment for everyone. The company is keen to provide them with additional support through this comparison and in the future. A lawyer from the moderators welcomed this step.
In December 2016, SZ-Magazin reported after months of research on the Bertelsmann company Arvato, which has been deleting Facebook posts in Berlin on behalf of the network since 2015. The staff felt insufficiently trained and told reporters things like: “Since I saw the child porn videos, I could actually be a nun – sex is out of the question. I haven’t been able to get intimate with my partner for over a year. As soon as he touches me, I start to tremble. “
According to the reports, the number of moderators was increased to relieve the teams. Facebook said in a blog entry in July 2017: “In order to ensure the well-being of Arvato employees, several measures have been taken. In addition to comprehensive health care, additional advice and support from company doctors, psychologists and internal social services are available. These standards and measures will be implemented continuously developed in an open dialogue with employees and employee representatives. ” In January 2020, the Verdi trade union described the working conditions at the now majorel-based company in Berlin as “precarious”. As a rule, employees only received temporary employment contracts and would have to endure a high level of psychological stress.