Facebook bows down to hate speech protests, promises to review policies

Last Updated: Thursday, May 30, 2013 - 11:45

London: After two weeks of protests and online campaigning against violent and hate speech, social media website Facebook has bowed down and agreed to review its flawed content policies and guidelines.

Campaigns by the U.S.-based Women, Action and Media, and the Everyday Sexism Project - a UK based Twitter feed, have demanded the removal of supposedly humorous content endorsing rape and domestic violence, according to a Fox News report.

Although Facebook`s policy forbids posting content that is `hate speech, threatening, pornographic, incites violence or contains nudity or graphic or gratuitous violence`, the site has allowed pages about attacking, raping, and abusing women which include graphic and offensive images.

The protest gained momentum when tens of thousands of tweets and emails using the hash tag #Fbrape were sent to the social network`s advertisers.

Earlier, Facebook denied the complaints citing freedom of speech, saying that people posting distasteful or vulgar content does not infringe the company`s policies.

However, with about 15 advertises, including Nissan UK, Nationwide UK, J Street and WestHost pulling out their ads, Facebook had to bow down to the protests.

Companies like Dove, Audible.com and Procter and Gamble said that they do not decide on which page their adverts appear on.

Facebook has promised to review and update its guidelines and balance free speech with a policy banning hate speech.

The report further said that Facebook accepted the company`s systems failing to identify and remove hate speech or violent content as effectively as expected especially around issues of gender-based hate.

ANI



First Published: Thursday, May 30, 2013 - 11:44

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