Feeds

Google and Facebook remove 'offensive' content from Indian sites

Internet firms comply with court order

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

Facebook and Google have removed content from Indian domain websites in response to a court order to get rid of "objectionable content".

The Indian subsidiaries of the internet firms were in court in New Delhi on Monday in a civil suit against the firms, and other web giants, brought by Muslim petitioner Mufti Aijaz Arshad Qasmi.

Both Facebook India and Google India said that they had removed material from their Indian sites that was deemed offensive to Muslims, Hindus and Christians.

"The review team has looked at the content and disabled this content from the local domains of search, YouTube and Blogger," Google spokeswoman Paroma Chaudhry told Reuters.

The court gave all the 21 websites listed in the suit 15 days to submit reports on their efforts to block offensive content on their sites.

Microsoft said it had "filed an application for rejection of the suit on the grounds that it disclosed no cause of action against Microsoft".

Google, Facebook, Microsoft and others have already lost a claim in the Delhi High Court on the same issue.

The claims were brought after India passed a controversial law last year that makes web firms responsible for the content their users post. If there are complaints, the company has just 36 hours to remove the offending material.

The internet firms have argued that it's not possible for them to block content and Google, Facebook, Yahoo! and Microsoft are appealing the High Court's decision.

Journalist Vinay Rai, the Hindu petitioner who brought the High Court case, said that if the companies can remove the content, they should be able to do it all the time instead of waiting for a court case to force them to do so.

Critics of the new law allege that its enforcement is tantamount to censorship, but India's minister of communications and information technology Kapil Sabil insists that the country's web users need their "sensibilities" protected.

The High Court has warned that if internet companies can't come up with a way to get rid of objectionable content, the country "like in China, may pass orders banning all such websites".

The Register contacted Google, Facebook and Microsoft for comment, but had received no replies at the time of publication. ®

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Sony says year's losses will be FOUR TIMES DEEPER than thought
Losses of more than $2 BILLION loom over troubled Japanese corp
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Why Oracle CEO Larry Ellison had to go ... Except he hasn't
Silicon Valley's veteran seadog in piratical Putin impression
Big Content Australia just blew a big hole in its credibility
AHEDA's research on average content prices did not expose methodology, so appears less than rigourous
Bono: Apple will sort out monetising music where the labels failed
Remastered so hard it would be difficult or impossible to master it again
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Storage capacity and performance optimization at Mizuno USA
Mizuno USA turn to Tegile storage technology to solve both their SAN and backup issues.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
The next step in data security
With recent increased privacy concerns and computers becoming more powerful, the chance of hackers being able to crack smaller-sized RSA keys increases.