Sama 'ethical AI' Facebook content moderation

February 2022
Updated: March 2022

Two weeks after a TIME investigation revealed low pay, poor working conditions and alleged union-busting in Kenya by outsourcing company Sama, the company says it will increase salaries by 30% to 50%.

Sama, whose website states it provides 'ethical AI' content moderation services to Facebook parent-company Meta, amongst other organisations, informed employees of the pay rise in a company meeting earlier this week.

Sama unionisation opacity

However, Sama reputedly failed to address allegations that its managers had attempted to suppress unionisation efforts at its operation in Kenya in 2019.

Former employee and whistleblower Daniel Motaung told TIME that had been fired for leading over 100 Sama workers in an attempted strike that aimed to secure better pay for staff.

Meta supply chain opacity

In a blog post responding to TIME's investigation, Sama had claimed its rate of pay was fair, arguing 'the article falsely alleges that Sama does not compensate its employees fairly'.

Meta has avoided commenting on Sama employment practices, and has not made public its audits of Sama's Kenya office.

Operator: Sama AI/Samasource; Meta/Facebook
Developer:
Sama AI/Samasource
Country:
S Africa
Sector:
Business/professional services
Purpose:
Moderate content
Technology: Content moderation system
Issue:
Employment - pay, jobs, working conditions, unionisation
Opacity:
Governance; Marketing - misleading