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Indybay Feature
Sun Oct 30 2016 (Updated 10/31/16)
Geofeedia Exposed for Police Monitoring of Social Media
Sun Oct 30 2016 (Updated 10/31/16)
Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter Provided Data Access for a Surveillance Product Marketed to Target Activists of Color
The ACLU of California has obtained records showing that Twitter, Facebook, and Instagram provided user data access to Geofeedia, a developer of a social media monitoring product that markets to law enforcement as a tool to monitor activists and protesters.

After the ACLU reported their findings to the companies, Instagram cut off Geofeedia’s access to public user posts, and Facebook has cut its access to a topic-based feed of public user posts. Twitter has also taken some recent steps to rein in Geofeedia though it has not ended the data relationship.

Further steps are required if these companies are to protect users of all backgrounds engaging in political and social discourse. The ACLU of California, the Center for Media Justice, and Color of Change are calling on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram to commit to concrete changes to better protect users going forward.

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