Meta withdraws Ukraine war content policy guidance request

Meta Platforms Inc announced it had withdrawn a request for a policy advisory opinion (PAO) about content related to Russia’s invasion of Ukraine previously referred to the Oversight Board. Meta cited ‘ongoing safety and security concerns,’ but not giving any further details. It’s the first time Meta has withdrawn such a request, setting a precedent that could hurt its working relationship with the Oversight Board.

Meta said it stands by its efforts related to the Russian invasion of Ukraine and expressed its belief that it is ‘taking the right steps to protect speech and balance the ongoing security concerns on the ground’.

The Oversight Board responded to the withdrawal in a tweet, ‘While the Board understands these concerns, we believe the request raises important issues and are disappointed by the company’s decision to withdraw it.’  

The Oversight Board rules on issues as an independent body, helps Meta police content on its social media platforms for controversial posts and advises on site policies. The Board includes academics, rights experts and lawyers.