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Bitche or “bitch”?  Facebook temporarily suspends the page of a city in Moselle – France

Withdrawn at the end of March before being republished on Tuesday: the Facebook page of the city of Bitche (Moselle) has passed under the caudine forks of the picky algorithm of the digital giant, which confused the name of this town with the English insult , we learned from the town hall and the company.

“Facebook censored our Town of Bitche page (…). On March 19, Facebook let us know (that it) was no longer published, on the grounds that it is in violation of the conditions applicable to Facebook pages, ”the mayor of Bitche, Benoît Kieffer, said in a statement.

The city appealed and the page was republished Tuesday, three weeks after its deletion, we learned from Facebook France, which concedes an “incorrect analysis on the part of our systems”, which automatically ban insults on Accounts. Bitche’s page complies with the rules of the platform, it is specified.

Close to the insult “bitch” in English

A mishap which however had the gift of annoying the mayor, whose press release was written before the republication of the account: “the name of our city seems to suffer from a misinterpretation”, reference to the English word “bitch” (” bitch ”).

The municipality claims to have repeatedly called on Facebook to restore the page, before resolving to create a new account, more neutral: “Mairie 57230”, the postal code of this municipality of about 5,000 inhabitants, famous for its imposing Citadel.

The city’s communications manager, Valérie Degouy, told local media that the same mishap had happened a few years ago to the Facebook pages of the Bitche or Citadel golf course, which were then reactivated. “What is happening today in the City of Bitche demonstrates the insufficiency and the limits of moderation tools that only a human eye can appreciate”, tackle Benoît Kieffer.

The chosen one invites the boss of the digital giant, Mark Zuckerberg, to go to Bitche to “discover our pretty fortified city” and “honor (…) the memory of his American compatriots (…) who under the banner of the 100th Division Infantry ”liberated Bitche in 1945.“ Liberators who then called themselves, with pride and irony, the Sons of Bitche ”, slips Benoît Kieffer.

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