- Congress claims Facebook ignores hate speeches from BJP leaders on its platforms
- Facebook says it enforces its policies “without regard to anyone’s political position,”
- The Congress party has some allegations against them as well
The Us based social networking giant Facebook has found itself surrounded by a charge of ignoring hate speeches made by the BJP leaders on its platforms, however, the company says it enforces policies on hate speech “without regard to anyone’s political position or party affiliation”. The controversy was fired after a US media report claimed that the social media giant ignored hate speech and objectionable content from leaders and workers of the ruling BJP.
A spokesperson from 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,”.
In an article which was titled “Facebook Hate-Speech Rules Collide With Indian Politics — Company executive opposed move to ban controversial politician”, the Wall Street Journal reported that Facebook looks the other way in cases of hate speech and objectionable content from the BJP leaders and workers.
The Wall Street Journal also reported that an executive of the firm (Facebook) has said that the punishment for the violations by the BJP workers “would damage the company’s business prospects in the country”.
Quoting both current and former employees, the article said Facebook has a “broader pattern of favouritism” towards the BJP.
This issue has become the latest flashpoint between the Congress and the in-power BJP as the former is citing the report as evidence of the alleged Social Media manipulation by the saffron party.
Seizing the report, Congress leader Rahul Gandi, on Sunday, extended a limb and accused the BJP along with the RSS of spreading “fake news” using Facebook and WhatsApp to influence the electorate.
The Union Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad hit back and reminded the Congress party to not forget about the Cambridge Analytica issue.
Member of Parliament from Congress, Sashi Tharoor, who heads the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology, said that the panel would like to hear from Facebook about the report.
Sashi Tharoor tweeted, “The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology would certainly wish to hear from Facebook about these reports and what they propose to do about hate-speech in India,”.
Our Parliamentary committee will, in the normal course, consider testimony under the topic “Safeguarding citizens’ rights & prevention of misuse of social/online news media platforms”. The subject is squarely within the IT Cmt’s mandate& @Facebook has been summoned in the past. https://t.co/saoK8B7VCN— Shashi Tharoor (@ShashiTharoor) August 16, 2020
In 2018’s March, a year before the general election in India, the Congress and the BJP have traded charges after it emerged that the scandal involving firm from the United Kingdom, Cambridge Analytica – accused of accessing data of millions of Facebook users to help elect US President Donald Trump in 2016 – could have links to elections in India.
The website of Cambridge Analytica said the fir did provide its services during the Bihar election in 2010 to a political party in India. The website of the Indian affiliate of Cambridge Analytica, Ovleno Business Intelligence (OBI), mentioned the BJP, Congress and the Janata Dal (United) of Nitish Kumar as its clients.
However, the Congress party had rubbished these charges.