Good groups urge Instagram not to censor Iranian dissident content

Three human rights groups have called on Meta, owner of Instagram and Facebook social networks, to review its procedures for reviewing Persian-language content for Iran.

Digital civil rights group Access Now, London-based rights organization Article 19 and the New York-based Center for Human Rights in Iran met with a senior Meta official on Thursday to express their concerns about content censorship by Iranian dissidents and democracy advocates. .

The groups said they made recommendations to Meta and Meta’s oversight board with the goal of streamlining processes to ensure freedom of expression is protected for users who rely on their platform in Iranespecially during demonstrations.

The groups have taken action following allegations that Instagram content moderators are removing accounts that documented the regime’s rights abuses during the latest wave of protests, including content showing Iranian security forces beating protesters and firing tear gas into the crowd.

BBC sources alleged that pro-regime employees of the German branch of Telus International, a Canadian contractor, which provides content moderation to Instagram with more than 400 Iranian employees for reviewing Persian-language content , are responsible for restricting anti-government content from Iranian users.

In an investigation report, Deutsche Welle Farsi revealed that Mehdi Norouzi, the son of a former emissary of the Islamic Republic in Bulgaria, Abdollah Norouzi, works at the subsidiary of Telas International in Sofia.

US lawmakers have also launched an investigation into the restrictions of the Meta on the content of Iranian dissidents.

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