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Draw line between objectionable and controversial, say websites

Tuesday December 06, 2011 07:54:55 PM, IANS

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New Delhi: Even as Communications Minister Kapil Sibal Tuesday said India will not tolerate objectionable content on social networking websites, Facebook and Google said they already have checks in place but it is difficult to differentiate between objectionable and controversial content.

Google said there was a need to differentiate between what was controversial and what was illegal, adding that anything that went against statute was removed by their team, including content that went against their strict terms and conditions.

"But it also means that when content is legal but controversial, we don't remove it because people's differing views should be respected, so long as they are legal," a Google spokesperson said in a statement.

The confusion remained on who will decide what is tantamount to "hurting" religious sentiments or an individual's personal integrity and privacy.

Sibal told reporters here that his ministry would come out with guidelines and a framework to curb such content on the net.

The representatives of these sites also pointed out to the sheer logistical nightmare in screening every bit of content that is posted on the sites.

"We will remove any content that violates our terms, which are designed to keep material that is hateful, threatening, incites violence or contains nudity off the service," said Facebook in a statement issued Tuesday.

"We want Facebook to be a place where people can discuss things freely, while respecting the rights and feelings of others, which is why we already have policies and on-site features in place that enable people to report abusive content," it added.

For these social networking sites, Indians form among the largest online communities. Facebook, for example, says that out of 800 million users globally, 34 million are in India -- the third largest such group country-wise, after the US and Indonesia.


 


 

 

 

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