Facebook says it needs to ‘do better’ after Cleveland killing

Update: The suspect, Steve Stephens, shot and killed himself Tuesday after a brief pursuit, Pennsylvania State Police said.

Facebook, feeling the heat amid a nationwide manhunt for the Cleveland man who uploaded a video of a killing to the social network, says it needs to do better.

The social network on Monday afternoon released a timeline that showed the actions of the suspect, Steve Stephens, from when he first uploaded a video to Facebook on Sunday talking about “intent to murder” till his account was disabled a couple of hours later.

“We disabled the suspect’s account within 23 minutes of receiving the first report about the murder video, and two hours after receiving a report of any kind,” said Justin Osofsky, vice president of global operations, in a blog post. “But we know we need to do better.”

This undated photo provided by the Cleveland Police shows Steve Stephens. Cleveland police said they are searching for Stephens, a homicide suspect, who recorded himself shooting another man and then posed the video on Facebook on Sunday, April 16, 2017. (Cleveland Police via AP)

Various reports say Stephens, 37, was shown on video shooting Robert Godwin Sr., 74, in the head, after asking him to say the name of Stephens’ ex-girlfriend. Stephens was reportedly shown in another video telling someone on the phone that he had “a lot of built-in anger and frustration.” Stephens also claimed to have killed 12 other people, a claim police are said to doubt.

Here’s the timeline Facebook released:

11:09AM PDT — First video, of intent to murder, uploaded. Not reported to Facebook.
11:11AM PDT — Second video, of shooting, uploaded.
11:22AM PDT — Suspect confesses to murder while using Live, is live for 5 minutes.
11:27AM PDT — Live ends, and Live video is first reported shortly after.
12:59PM PDT — Video of shooting is first reported.
1:22PM PDT — Suspect’s account disabled; all videos no longer visible to public.

Osofsky said the company is “constantly exploring ways that new technologies can help us make sure Facebook is a safe environment.” The social network is using artificial intelligence in this effort. He also mentioned that Facebook has thousands of people around the world who review “the million of items that are reported to us every week in more than 40 languages.” He said the Menlo Park company — which has 1.9 billion users — is working on improving its review processes.

Facebook’s Live video offering has led to broadcasts of a beating of a mentally disabled mansexual assault, police brutality, suicide and more.

Other platforms that allow for people to post videos have grappled with similar issues. Videos with violent content have been uploaded to or streamed on YouTube, Twitter’s Periscope and more.

But Facebook is dealing with this latest controversy as it opens its annual developers conference in San Jose today, where CEO Mark Zuckerberg is expected to deliver the keynote address. As people call for Facebook to do something, it will be surprising if he doesn’t address the issue.


Photo: An armored police vehicle drives through Fairmount park in Philadelphia, Monday, April 17, 2017. Steve Stephens, the suspect in the shooting death of a Cleveland retiree collecting aluminum cans, has shot and killed himself, Pennsylvania State Police said Tuesday, April 18, 2017. (Matt Rourke/AP)


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  • Cheap & Nothing Wasted

    Luckily, he was so stupid, he kept his cellphone & the cops traced it.