A report by The Wall Street Journal on Saturday mentioned that Facebook
overlooked its hate speech
policies in the cases of Telangana Bharatiya Janata Party MLA T Raja Singh and three other “Hindu nationalist individuals and groups” in order to safeguard the social media
platform’s business prospects. It also stated that one of Facebook’s top public policy executives in India “opposed applying hate-speech rules” to individuals linked with the BJP even though they were “flagged internally for promoting violence”.
In response to the development, Facebook said: “We prohibit hate speech
and content that incites violence, and we enforce these policies globally without regard to anyone’s political position or party affiliation. While we know there is more to do, we’re making progress on enforcement and conduct regular audits of our process to ensure fairness and accuracy.”
Facebook has been under the government’s radar for quite some time, to quell the menace of fake news
and hate speech.
India is the largest user base for Facebook globally with over 300 million users while its messaging platform WhatsApp also has around 450 million users in the country.
The issue also resulted in a war of words between Congress leader Rahul Gandhi and Ravi Shankar Prasad, Minister of Electronics and Information Technology, on Twitter. “BJP & RSS control Facebook and WhatsApp in India. They spread fake news
and hatred through it and use it to influence the electorate. Finally, the American media has come out with the truth about Facebook,” Gandhi tweeted.
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