WhatsApp content moderators have to review some of the most disturbing content floating around the internet. Time spoke to some of them about the lack of support and their allegations of pay discrimination.
Content moderators working at Accenture for WhatsApp are entitled to 30 minutes of “wellness” breaks per eight-hour shift, employees say, as well as one-on-one access once a month to “wellness coaches” provided by the company. They also undergo training to prepare them for the kinds of content they are expected to look at on the job. But even Accenture acknowledges that the help these resources provide is limited. Moderators working on a Facebook contract for Accenture in Europe were required to sign a document in January 2020 acknowledging “that the wellness coach is not a medical doctor and cannot diagnose or treat mental health disorders.” TIME viewed a copy of the document, which was first reported by the Financial Times. It requires employees to acknowledge that “the weCare Program [wellness] services, standing alone, may not be able to prevent my work from affecting my mental health.” It also notes that the work “could even lead to Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.” (Facebook told the Financial Times it did not review or approve the document, and was not aware of it.)
Check It Out: WhatsApp Content Moderator – ‘I Sold My Soul.’