In the latest scandal to hit fledgling Gettr, users of the new pro-Trump social media platform have been allowed to share child-exploitation images.
"New research from the Stanford Internet Observatory's Cyber Policy Center has laid bare the dangers of the platform's almost complete lack of moderation and identified more than a dozen child abuse images being shared by Gettr users," Vice News reported Monday.
David Thiel, one of the authors of the report, wrote on Twitter: "This, frankly, is just reckless. You cannot run a social media site, particularly one targeted to include content forbidden from mainstream platforms, solely with voluntary flagging."
Thiel explained that other social media platforms use what are known as "machine learning models" — such as software known as PhotoDNA — to analyze uploaded material, censoring child exploitation images and even notifying law enforcement.
However, Gettr is apparently relying instead on users to report images. And, not surprisingly, this system isn't working, as Thiel and fellow researchers found 16 child-exploitation matches from the PhotoDNA database among images uploaded to Gettr.
"They were also able to successfully show how easy it is to upload child exploitation imagery by posting several benign images PhotoDNA stores in its database for testing purposes," Vice reports.
Jason Miller, the former Trump advisor behind Gettr, denied the report and said all images of children are screened by a human moderator, but did not explain how the 16 matches escaped detection.
Meanwhile, the researchers also found that new user registrations on Gettr have slowed to a trickle just a month after its launch — and the vast majority who've signed up have yet to comment or post on the platform.
"This is hardly surprising however, given that in the week after Gettr launched, the site's source code was leaked and prominent accounts were defaced," Vice reports, referencing reports that the platform was hit with a flood of NSFW Sonic the Hedgehog content, and had become a "safe haven for ISIS."