Facebook Spanish Language Moderators Say They’re Treated Worse Than English Counterparts

In Richardson, Texas, the office of Genpact, a Meta subcontractor, Spanish-speaking moderators told BuzzFeed News that they have been required to report to the office since April 2021, despite the The emergence of both Delta and Omicron variants caused a spike in COVID infections across the United States. During this time, they said, moderators who reviewed English-language content were allowed to rotate through the office for three months.

“Being in the office… not a nightmare,” said one executive.

BuzzFeed News spoke to three members of Genpact’s so-called Mexican market group, who described the pattern of unequal treatment of Hispanic-speaking censors. All of these individuals spoke on condition of anonymity because Genpact requires them to sign non-disclosure agreements and they fear their jobs. They say that in addition to reporting to the office for the past nine months while their English-speaking counterparts can work from home, Spanish moderators are subject to unrealistic performance standards and are not compensated for working in two languages, which they say is more time consuming. Additionally, they face pressure to regulate a Facebook marketplace that has long been criticized for its lack of moderation amid the threat of active COVID cases.

Genpact spokeswoman Danielle D’Angelo declined to comment on all of the Spanish-speaking moderators’ specific statements, including the claim that their Mexican market team is not authorized to work from home. while other groups were rotated.

“We want to emphasize that employee safety is our top priority and that has been and will remain so throughout the COVID-19 pandemic,” said D’Angelo. “Any decision to return to the office made in accordance with the needs of the client is made with health and safety best practices in place and in accordance with local regulations. At all of our work sites, including our Richardson, TX office, we follow best safety standards which include regular antigen testing. ”

On Thursday, managers at Genpact’s Richardson site told the company’s dealers that they had scrapped plans to reopen at 50% capacity on January 31 due to the Omicron variant. The Spanish-speaking moderators said the change did not affect them and that they will continue to report it to the office. Genpact declined to comment on when it plans to reopen and at what capacity.

At the end of June, Genpact management emailed one of the English moderation teams allowed to rotate out of office, thanking them for their “continued dedication and responsiveness.” The email said they would return to work from home on July 26.

Spanish-language moderators told BuzzFeed News they received no such email. A few days after the English-speaking moderators were informed that they could return home, “[managers] told us we are a specialized queuer and our work cannot be done outside of the office,” said one moderator, noting that the Mexican market is often involved in censorship a large amount of special graphic content. Facebook declined to comment on complaints from its Spanish-speaking censors, moving BuzzFeed News to Genpact – a strategy it has implemented many times when it comes to addressing the concerns of people moderating content. Their Facebook.

Since returning to Richardson’s office, employees have grown increasingly concerned about their safety. Moderators told BuzzFeed News that 30 cases of COVID were reported to employees by management in December, and no updates have been announced since. Meanwhile, workers say their colleagues continue to test positive for COVID, citing two cases per floor last week. Genpact declined to comment on the number of COVID cases in its office or how often it reports these cases to employees.

On December 22, a dozen Spanish-speaking executives left the office shortly after learning through the vine that a sick coworker might have exposed them to the virus. Since the workers claimed that Genpact was not currently offering its operator paid sick leave, they used the PTO to self-isolate. Genpact declined to comment on whether its moderators receive paid sick leave.

Although named for the Mexican market, this research team evaluates Facebook and Instagram content posted in Spanish by users across most of Latin America, moderators said. As of 2018, there were 84 million Facebook users in Mexico and tens of millions of other people use WhatsApp. In Latino and Hispanic communities, Facebook has become a misinformation vector, shape public perception of topics such as COVID, electoral politics, and Black Lives Matter. But the researchers misinformed tell the Guardian Compared with posts in English, harmful content posted in Spanish is less likely to be removed.

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