What is your opinion on Indian govt's demand to social networking sites??

on Monday, December 12, 2011
 (Source: Google Images)
 A quick overview:
 Congress got upset by the defamatory contents related to Sonia Gandhi; this includes three "I hate Sonia Gandhi" fan page and other offensive pictures of Sonia Gandhi and Manmohan Singh. They also highlighted the fact that people are posting offensive content against culture, religion, god and country. They are now asking to filter the content we post; after we post it and before it is published on the website on every social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, Google+, YouTube etc.

On the other hand Facebook is saying that they will not delete those contents which follows the policies of the website. They said it is not possible to do what Indian govt is demanding as the number of users from India is so high that it's not possible to screen every single thing they update, including photos, comments, status etc. They added that though they will engage with the Indian govt and delete all those content which violates the website policies and they continuously delete such offensive content, they added.

Google said a clear "no". They said that people differ in views and hence they will not delete the content just because they are controversial. They will not delete those content that follows the local laws and the standards of the company.

Microsoft and Yahoo didn't commented on the issue at the moment.

My views
I support govt's interest in deleting such contents but I do not support the way they chose to do this. I don't support the screening of our content. I seriously feel that it will disturb our freedom and privacy. I don't understand what govt wants. I would say that the offensive pictures of Sonia Gandhi should be removed but what's wrong in the "I hate Sonia Gandhi" fan page?? Different people has different opinion on almost every topic that we can think of. If someone hates somebody then what's wrong in expressing that?? And everybody knows the reason why people hate Sonia Gandhi. There's always a reason for such hate towards political leaders.

Many people are saying that how this will effect our freedom?? But I seriously think that it will affect our freedom to speech. Recently under this filtering program of Sibal, congress banned the Facebook fan page of Indian Army, just for the reason that the supporters of Lokpal bill were criticizing congress. What about the 4 lac fans of that Facebook page?? Why didn't they cared about the 4 lac citizens of India for which they work?? Isn't this against right to speech?? Don't we have the right to express our feelings with friends?? This simply shows that they only want to clear up their offensive content, no matters how common people feel.

I agree with the social networking sites that they already have the report abuse link on every single profile, every single photo and every single status people update. I don't think many of the people are using it instead they are just complaining. But is it the social networking site's fault that we are not reporting things which are bothering us??

Before this issue, Indian govt wished to access the gmail and skype data for security reasons. They have problem with Blackberry messenger and also with Google Earth claiming that terrorists can use it. In this sense, they should ban the technology completely.

I know what they are going to ask next: They'll ask to filter and screen our sms.

I think they should plan for some more realistic and sensible plan to control such contents rather than disturbing our privacy and freedom.

Reaction of common people 
A lots of people are not supporting Sibal's decision. A famous # tag is circulating in Twitter: #IdiotKapilSibal. And I've also gone through some of the comments by common people which are as follows:

1. Facebook should add a button called "Report Sibal"2. Clinton can take criticism, hate mails, bad remarks by people, Obama can take it, Bush can take it, Queen Elizabeth can take it, Sarkozi can take it, Putin can take it like every democratic country leader and otherwise also...... ....But Antonio Mino (filmy name Sonia) and Raul Vinci cannot it. Time to keep your Italian passports ready3. I am aghast at Sibal's threat to the social networking sites. Are we heading towards Nazi or Stalinist regime? He seems to have concern only at some comments on his party leader. A wise leader should ignore such comments instead of trying to muzzle them. Recently they have approached the judiciary to restrain Dr Swamy from speaking against the corruption by Chidambaram and Sonia. Let them wait for the result.4. Does Congress has objection on SONIA / RAHUL GANDHI EXPOSED on YouTube ?................and many more. 

(Source: Google Images)
The above comments shows that people are not happy with this decision of govt. Why govt is not considering common people's thought and doing everything on their own, for themselves. Why they are not taking actions against other adult sites and the sites which has instructions to make bombs or the "official" websites of terrorists?? They are only targeting social networking sites because they've found offensive things against them in these sites. They don't care about the nation and other affected areas of internet. They are hiding their selfishness behind the words: "people are posting offensive content for religion, country, god and culture and these content should not be accepted".

There's a huge debate going on in this topic. But I am among those who do not support this action completely. I'm against offensive content and I too think that such content should be removed but I'm also against with the govt's decision to screen our content. I think they should plan some new ideas to delete offensive content. 

What about you?? Please share your views; whether you support this or not.

(The way govt is thinking and planning, I'm wondering how long this post will be in internet!!)


Rachna said...

Well I agree with your views. I don't agree that they must have a choice of censoring free speech.

Lucky said...

Our so called representatives or leaders think they are and can get away as the modern age Nazis..

Linda Rogers said...

It's never good to take away people's freedom of speech. Like you, I'm not into offensive content either but there has to be a better way to deal with this. They need not be so black and white about this issue as I'm sure there are solutions other than this one.

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