I MODERATOR who deal with filter online content for platforms like Facebook, YouTube, TikTok e ChatGPT in Kenya they decided to form a union to demand better working conditions.
Social media and AI moderators in Kenya form a union
The birth of the union follows a lawsuit filed by 184 workers who had been employed by Facebook in Kenya and who were fired in January. They sued parent company Meta for wrongful termination.
Last Monday in Nairobi, 200 workers from Sama and Majorel – companies that provide content moderation services a Facebook, Youtube, TikTok and ChatGPT – protested against the unfair treatment of their employees by tech giants uniting to defend their rights. Moderators who work in 14 different African languages they met on May Day to vote for the establishment of a trade union to address issues such as the mistreatment of workers.
This isn’t the first time content moderators have tried to form a union. In 2019, those in Sama attempted to join the union. A choice dictated by low pay and poor working conditions. Workers have threatened to strike if their demands for better wages and conditions were not heeded.
Many social media companies or companies that collect data for artificial intelligence use external companies to moderate content. Often, these companies are based in Africa and South Asia. And they have terrible working conditions. Several commentators have pointed out that social and AI companies outsource these tasks because they are considered problematic. Several workers have reported exposure to traumatic content.
The hope is that this new union, born on May 1st, will be able to guarantee better conditions for content moderators.