Sex sits of the world of the internet

By October, they had posted their first one million-view hit: Brazilian soccer phenom Ronaldinho trying out a pair of gold cleats.

A year later, Google paid an unprecedented

By October, they had posted their first one million-view hit: Brazilian soccer phenom Ronaldinho trying out a pair of gold cleats.A year later, Google paid an unprecedented $1.65 billion to buy the site.After watching a couple seconds apiece, SQUAD members clicked one of four buttons that appeared in the upper right hand corner of their screens: "Approve" — let the video stand; "Racy" — mark video as 18-plus; "Reject" — remove video without penalty; "Strike" — remove video with a penalty to the account. But that day Mora-Blanco came across something that stopped her in her tracks. Mora-Blanco won’t describe what she saw that morning.For everyone’s sake, she says, she won’t conjure the staggeringly violent images which, she recalls, involved a toddler and a dimly lit hotel room.Ewing-Davis calmly walked Mora-Blanco through her next steps: hit "Strike," suspend the user, and forward the person’s account details and the video to the SQUAD team’s supervisor. Almost a decade later, the video and the child in it still haunt her.From there, the information would travel to the Cyber Tipline, a reporting system launched by the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children (NCMEC) in 1998. "In the back of my head, of all the images, I still see that one," she said when we spoke recently."I haven’t talked about this in a long time." Mora-Blanco is one of more than a dozen current and former employees and contractors of major internet platforms from You Tube to Facebook who spoke to us candidly about the dawn of content moderation.Many of these individuals are going public with their experiences for the first time.

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By October, they had posted their first one million-view hit: Brazilian soccer phenom Ronaldinho trying out a pair of gold cleats.

A year later, Google paid an unprecedented $1.65 billion to buy the site.

.65 billion to buy the site.

As law professor Jeffrey Rosen first said many years ago of Facebook, these platforms have "more power in determining who can speak and who can be heard around the globe than any Supreme Court justice, any king or any president." Launched in 2005, You Tube was the brainchild of Chad Hurley, Steve Chen, and Jawed Karim—three men in their 20s who were frustrated because technically there was no easy way for them to share two particularly compelling videos: clips of the 2004 tsunami that had devastated southeast Asia, and Janet Jackson’s Superbowl "wardrobe malfunction." In April of 2005, they tested their first upload.

Mora-Blanco’s team — 10 people in total — was dubbed The SQUAD (Safety, Quality, and User Advocacy Department).

They worked in teams of four to six, some doing day shifts and some night, reviewing videos around the clock. To protect You Tube’s fledgling brand by scrubbing the site of offensive or malicious content that had been flagged by users, or, as Mora-Blanco puts it, "to keep us from becoming a shock site." The founders wanted You Tube to be something new, something better — "a place for everyone" — and not another e Baum’s World, which had already become a repository for explicit pornography and gratuitous violence. Mora-Blanco recalls her teammates were a "mish-mash" of men and women; gay and straight; slightly tipped toward white, but also Indian, African-American, and Filipino.

In the process, they drew up some of the earliest outlines for what was fast becoming a new field of work, an industry that had never before been systematized or scaled: professional moderation.

By fall 2006, working with data and video illustrations from the SQUAD, You Tube’s lawyer, head of policy, and head of support created the company’s first booklet of rules for the team, which, Mora-Blanco recalls, was only about six pages long.

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