Recently, a content moderator on TikTok has sued the social media platform and its parent ByteDance over mental trauma caused by graphic videos. In a proposed class-action lawsuit, content moderator Candie Frazier stated that she has screened graphic videos displaying violence, school shootings, fatal drops, and even cannibalism. “Plaintiff has trouble sleeping and when she does sleep, she has horrific nightmares,” the lawsuit states.
Moreover, TikTok allegedly requires content moderators to work 12-hour shifts with only a one-hour lunch and two 15-minute intervals. “Due to the sheer volume of content, content moderators are permitted no more than 25 seconds per video, and simultaneously view three to ten videos at the same time,” as per the complaint.
The Content Moderator Suffers from Severe Mental Trauma
The complainant has a problem sleeping and when she does sleep, she has dreadful nightmares and then suffers from mental trauma. Along with other social media corporations including Facebook and YouTube, TikTok devised policies to help moderators cope with child abuse and other traumatic pictures. Among the recommendations is that firms restrict content moderator shifts to four hours and supply psychological aid to counter the mental trauma.
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However, TikTok allegedly failed to enforce those guidelines, according to the lawsuit. Content moderators take the brunt of graphic videos and traumatic images that emerge on social media, making sure that users don’t have to experience them.
A Similar Lawsuit was Filed Against Facebook in 2018
One organization that provides content moderators for large tech corporations even acknowledged in a consent form that the job can induce post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). However, social media corporations have been slammed by their mods and others for not paying enough given the mental trauma, and not providing enough mental health support. A similar lawsuit was filed against Facebook in 2018.
The content moderator, Frazier is expecting to represent other Tiktok screeners in a class-action suit and is asking for compensation for the mental trauma she has suffered from the graphic videos and a court order for a medical fund for moderators.