Meta's Threads Faces Backlash for Biased drugs Content Filtering
Meta's Threads, a text-based social media platform created by former Facebook employees, appears to have a bias against cannabis and psychedelics, aiming to safeguard its users from these substances. The platform, regarded as a potential rival to Twitter and a source of contention between Twitter owner Elon Musk and Meta Platforms CEO Mark Zuckerberg, has gained immense popularity with over 10 million downloads, surpassing ChatGPT's record for the fastest growth to one million users. However, concerns have been raised about Threads' drug content flagging system, which seems to inaccurately identify substances as potentially problematic.
When users search for terms such as marijuana, psychedelics, or fentanyl, they are met with a stern warning highlighting the association with drug sales and the potential harm caused by illicit drug trade, along with its illegality in most countries. The platform offers a "get help" option, directing users to seek assistance through confidential treatment referrals, prevention, and recovery support. Users are encouraged to visit the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) website or proceed with their search.
Furthermore, warnings are triggered by other drug-related terms like MDMA, peyote, Vicodin, Percocet, Adderall, Xanax, meth, heroin, and DMT. However, when it comes to terms related to alcohol and tobacco such as beer, cigarettes, or liquor, the platform does not provide similar guidance or resources.