Twitter, Facebook and others in dilemma over Policing Hate Speech
This time around, Silicon Valley needs to choose what to put first. A lot of the interested parties will be following closely to see whether it will start with the stamping out of hateful content or the preservation of free speech.
Some violent protests were experienced over the weekend in Charlottesville, Va. They reignited calls for some tech companies to put in place the most appropriate measures to guard against extremist content. Some of the companies included Google, Twitter and Facebook Inc.
As a matter of fact, the move will of course impress some people. However, it might also end up disappointing those who will take a different standpoint. To them, it is going a little bit too far outside of Facebook or Twitter’s purview to police any form of content on their diverse platforms.
GoDaddy Inc, Facebook, Google and Reddit are some of the companies that took to action to terminate content related to or promoting white nationalist and Neo-Nazi websites. Last Wednesday witnessed Twitter joining them as was revealed by some sources.
On Monday, Google revealed that it was going to proceed with the move to cancel the domain registration for The Daioly Stormer, which is a Neo-Nazi news and commentary website. This company’s spokesperson stated that it in a major way violated the provider’s terms of service.
He added that a number of concerns rose pointing to the idea that Daily Stormer’s services were inciting violence. A lot of people wanted him to elaborate further on the exact content that went against the set policy. They were frustrated after he declined to comment further in relation to this for reasons best known to him. Within the first four hours of the of the site’s application, Google had already cancelled Daily Stormer’s domain registration.
CEO Blake Irving opined, “We always have to ride the fence on making sure we are protecting a free and open internet. But when the line gets crossed and that speech starts to incite violence, then we have a responsibility to take that down.”