Hundreds of Africans tasked with scouring platforms such as Facebook, TikTok and ChatGPT for graphic content have joined the continent's first union for content moderators, but organizers say some fear losing their jobs if their membership is revealed.

The union was established in Nairobi in May with the help of former Facebook moderator and whistleblower Daniel Motaung, who experienced firsthand both the mental toll of this grueling work, and the challenges of holding Big Tech to account.

Last year, Motaung, a South African, filed a lawsuit against Facebook's parent company Meta and its local outsourcing firm Sama, alleging irregular pay, union-busting and inadequate mental health support resulting in trauma.