Palestinian man arrested for posting ‘good morning’ on Facebook

Facebook, the most powerful social media channel uses different algorithms to monitor and process posts from all over the world.

But a simple text such as Good Morning may put you behind bars. It is unheard of but it happened for this Palestinian.

A Palestinian man added a picture on Facebook wishing “good morning”. Facebook’s auto-translate feature turned the Arabic “good morning” into English “hurt them” and Hebrew “attack them”.

According to the police, bulldozers have been used as a terrorist tool for the hit-and-run case in Israel. As he’s a construction worker and used his worksite picture for the post, leaning against the bulldozer, it immediately raised a flag. The Cyber Crime division responded and they took him in the custody.

Later, after questioning him the truth came forward. He was released instantly as soon as the police realized their mistake.

Facebook, in a statement to Gizmodo, apologized for the whole instance and said, “Unfortunately, our translation systems made an error last week that misinterpreted what this individual posted. Even though our translations are getting better each day, mistakes like these might happen from time to time and we’ve taken steps to address this particular issue. We apologize to him and his family for the mistake and the disruption this caused.”

The fact that Facebook’s translation feature is handled by Artificial Intelligence caused this huge error. Recently, we saw Facebook facing scrutiny for the advertisements that were used to divide the people’s attention ahead of the 2016 presidential election and for Yom Kippur festival.

Though it’s not big as the former, surely they need to alter and amend the algorithms for such simple err can hamper a person’s reputation in the society.

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