Mora-Blanco sat next to Misty Ewing-Davis, who, having been on the job a few months, counted as an old hand. On the table before them was a single piece of paper, folded in half to show a bullet-point list of instructions: Remove videos of animal abuse. Remove videos showing blood. Remove visible nudity. Remove pornography. Mora-Blanco recalls her teammates were a “mish-mash” of men and women; gay and straight; slightly tipped toward white, but also Indian, African-American, and Filipino. Most of them were friends, friends of friends, or family. They talked and made jokes, trying to make sense of the rules. “You have to find humor,” she remembers. “Otherwise it’s just painful.”
Videos arrived on their screens in a never-ending queue. After watching a couple seconds apiece, SQUAD members clicked one of four buttons that appeared in the upper right hand corner of their screens: “Approve” — let the video stand; “Racy” — mark video as 18-plus; “Reject” — remove video without penalty; “Strike” — remove video with a penalty to the account. Click, click, click. But that day Mora-Blanco came across something that stopped her in her tracks.
Add this to the list of jobs that didn’t exist 10 years ago. I don’t know how moderators do their jobs day after day without going crazy.