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We Had To Remove This Post
We Had To Remove This Post | Hanna Bervoets
12 posts | 14 read | 2 reading | 6 to read
'[A] superbly poised, psychologically astute and subtle novel of mental unravelling.' Ian McEwan, author of Atonement 'Fast paced and thrilling, violent and nightmarish and grief-stricken, but also tender and wildly moving.' Kristen Arnett, author of Mostly Dead Things 'This novel gives us an acid glimpse into a new form of labor existing today . . . Fascinating and disturbing.' Ling Ma, author of Severance To be a content moderator is to see humanity at its worst but Kayleigh needs money. Thats why she takes a job working for a social media platform whose name she isnt allowed to mention. Her job: reviewing offensive videos and pictures, rants and conspiracy theories, and deciding which need to be removed. Its gruelling work. Kayleigh and her colleagues spend all day watching horrors and hate on their screens, evaluating them with the platforms ever-changing moderating guidelines. Yet Kayleigh is good at her job, and in her colleagues she finds a group of friends, even a new girlfriend and for the first time in her life, Kayleighs future seems bright. But soon the job seems to change them all, shifting their worlds in alarming ways. How long before the moderators own morals bend and flex under the weight of what they see? We Had To Remove This Post by Hanna Bervoets is a chilling, powerful and gripping story about who or what determines our world view. Examining the toxic world of content moderation, the novel forces us to ask: what is right? What is real? What is normal? And who gets to decide? Translated by Emma Rault.
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Robotswithpersonality
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Mehso-so

That was nauseatingly uncomfortable on purpose. I think I would recommend reading the non-fiction articles cited at the end, over this book and its unreliable and progressively more traumatized and traumatizing characters, if you want to investigate what being a content moderator on the internet does to a human. Excuse me while I go find something fluffy with pretty pictures.

Dilara “Nauseatingly uncomfortable“? I'll just focus on the Tunisian crochet pieces... (very nice!) 2d
Robotswithpersonality @Dilara Thanks! I'm still a beginner at crochet, but I love experimenting with new stitches and new colour combos. ☺️ 2d
4 likes2 comments
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TheEllieMo
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Mehso-so

This one has an interesting premise but missed the mark for me. My main takeaway was it might explain why moderation on some social media sites is so lacking.

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psalva
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Pickpick

This was brutal. It was, to me, a study in the extremes of PTSD from work environments. It was twisted, dark, and haunting, but grounded in the reality of social media moderators. Trigger warnings for just about everything. The writing was intense but this was a page turner, so I will be looking for the author‘s other work to be translated into English.

12 likes1 stack add
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keithmalek
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Panpan

I've never read a novel that fell so far short of its description. The only "good" thing about this book is that it doesn't take long to read.

Terrible.

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psalva
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This is my library haul for today. I was also hoping to get my hands on the new Thursday Murder Club book, but I need to put a hold as it was checked out already. I‘ll be watching 42nd Street this evening and enjoying the closest thing to fall weather we‘ve had in SC so far this year.

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ErraticElle
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Mehso-so

An examination of social media & the mental strain of being a moderator. An interesting psychological exploration delivered in a tight clip. Some great observations & provokes thought, but doesn't really go anywhere. Starts off strong, but then spirals into repetition. A lot of telling vs. showing & resulting lack of intensity. A left field ending that wasn't conclusive. Good thought piece with decent writing, but an incomplete execution.

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KarenUK
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Pickpick

A pick but only just….. I found the premise of this short novella intriguing and unsettling, and tore through it… BUT although I usually don‘t mind an ambiguous ending, this one felt unfinished. A young woman takes a job with questionable working conditions, that‘s also kinda secret, deciding which horrific/offensive/dangerous etc, social media posts, should be taken down, and which remain for our scrolling ‘pleasure‘…. (Continued in comments)⬇️

KarenUK Told from her POV once no longer in the job, and hinting to some ‘incident‘, the story seems to build towards a crescendo that never really happens. The story feels sharp and relevant and a bit icky, but petered out at its conclusion. Still an interesting read. 4mo
BarbaraBB So true. I completely agree with your review 4mo
50 likes2 stack adds2 comments
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squirrelbrain
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Pickpick

This novella is only just a pick for me. The MC is a moderator in a call-centre, looking at distressing internet videos. I liked the in-depth look at how this can cause trauma and reverberations throughout the lives of the protagonists, but I‘m afraid I just didn‘t understand the ending.

Maybe, Mr McEwan, it was just too subtle or maybe I‘m just not psychologically astute enough, but it was very 🤔 and almost spoiled the book for me.

BarbaraBB I don‘t remember the ending anymore 🤦🏻‍♀️ 5mo
squirrelbrain @barbarabb - she went to the house of the girl in the video, someone came in downstairs and then it just ended…. 5mo
Megabooks I thought about reading this, but ultimately it didn‘t seem that…idk striking. I‘m glad I said no. 5mo
56 likes1 stack add3 comments
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natashalb
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Mehso-so

Only 130 odd pages and easily devoured in a day. Kayleigh takes a job as a content moderator for a social media platform whose name she can't mention. All day she and her colleagues review offensive and violent content and decide which to remove and which can remain accordingly to the platform's strict guidelines. How does viewing such content day in day out affect a person?

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she_she
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15

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MinnieTimperley
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Pickpick

This novella made me consider a side to social media that I had not given much thought to previously: the psychological effects on the content moderators that are employed by these organisations.

Protagonist Kayleigh is vulnerable to the manipulations of others in her personal life. Through her eyes, we witness the insipid effects of the content and judgements that she and her workmates engage in daily.

Thank you Netgallery for the opportunity

40 likes1 stack add1 comment
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BarbaraBB
Wat wij zagen | Hanna Marleen Bervoets
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Pickpick

Kayleigh works for an online platform as a content moderator. She has to watch shocking content for hours a day and decide what should be removed. Not surprisingly she and her co-workers cling together somewhat desperately in their spare time. They drink and play tough but can‘t avoid being influenced by what they are watching all day. Conspiracy theories take over their conversations. An okay read.

Megabooks I know this is a Dutch book, but I read a short story with a similar plot set in Indonesia…but I can‘t remember the book! 1y
CarolynM That sounds interesting! I think it would be hard to stay sane in that situation. 1y
BarbaraBB @Megabooks This is a short story too. How weird! Let me know if you remember! (That‘s for reading as much as you do 😉) 1y
BarbaraBB @CarolynM Yes It sounds quite convincing! 1y
63 likes4 comments