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Meta Falsely Associates Woman with Sexual Abuse

Sonja Shaw
Sonja Shaw, president of the Chino Valley Unified School District school board in California | Image by Chino Valley Unified School District

Sonja Shaw, president of the Chino Valley Unified School District school board in California, was reportedly falsely associated with child sexual abuse on Facebook by the platform’s parent company, Meta.

“Recently, members of the public who searched for Shaw’s name on the Meta-owned platforms Instagram and Facebook received a warning message,” claimed the Liberty Justice Center, which is representing Shaw, per RedState. “In that message, Meta stated, ‘We think that your search might be associated with child sexual abuse’ and warned that ‘searching for such material’ can lead to imprisonment and other severe punishments.”

Other politicians have faced similar issues, with Facebook and Instagram users reporting that Republican Nick Wilson, a candidate for California State Assembly, was also falsely associated with child sexual abuse on the sites.

After social media users highlighted the problem with the help of Los Angeles County Sheriff Alex Villanueva, the warning messages went away. However, searching for the name “Nick Wilson” or “AD53” yielded zero results, raising election interference concerns, according to RedState.

Shaw is demanding accountability, stressing that something like this should never happen again.

Shaw’s representatives sent a demand letter to Meta, which stated, “First, Ms. Shaw hereby requests written assurance by 5:00 pm Pacific on Thursday, March 21, 2024, that Meta and its employees will never again target Ms. Shaw with another egregiously false statement. Meta’s false message and speech implied to the public that Ms. Shaw herself has been associated with child sexual abuse, which, of course, is FALSE.”

“Additionally, Ms. Shaw requests an explanation in writing as to how Meta decided to initially issue its false public statement associating and linking her with child sexual abuse, including any communication Meta may have received from any state or federal government officials about Ms. Shaw,” the demand letter stated, according to RedState.

Shaw suggested the social media site’s actions could be an attempt to interfere with the current litigation between California and the Chino Valley School District about the school district’s parental notification policies, RedState reported.

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