Facebook has had a long list of battles to deal with in the past year. Between privacy, data and hate speech issues, the company has faced extreme backlash. Not to mention, the tech giant’s struggle internally with its contractors who moderate content for the platform.
Content moderators are the ones who have to ensure tragedies like the New Zealand shooting and other crimes are not shared on the platform. However, these gatekeepers have not had the wages nor benefits to match their heavy workloads.
To change this, Facebook is upping its minimum wage. In the San Francisco Bay Area, New York City and Washington, D.C., wages will increase from $15 to $22. Seattle wages will increase to $20 and to $18 in all of the remaining metro cities in the U.S.
“Their work is critical to keeping our community safe, and it’s often difficult. That’s why we’ve paid content reviewers more than minimum wage standards,” Facebook said in a blog post. “Content review at our size can be challenging and we know we have more work to do. We’re committed to supporting our content reviewers in a way that puts their well-being first.”
The company also said it would introduce plans to increase the minimum wage for its international contractors later this year.
Content reviewers will also have expanded benefits that include on-site counseling, customizable preferences on how they review content and on-going resiliency training.
Facebook said it is implementing a biannual audit and compliance program this year to help contract content reviewers to increase accountability within the company.
Big tech companies like Google and Facebook have received pushback for their treatment of contract and temporary workers. In November, Amazon announced that it was increasing its minimum wage to $15 for all of its subsidiary and Whole Foods employees.
Facebook’s increased minimum wage and benefits serve as a win for workers within the company. However, there is no official date for when the new wages will be implemented.