Sibal meets social media companies over content screening

New Delhi: After enraging netizens with
his proposed screening measures to root out objectionable content from
internet, Communications Minister Kapil Sibal Thursday met
representatives of social networking sites to evolve mutually agreeable
guidelines to ensure that such content do not go on their platforms.


“I
have asked them to give us suggestions…the reach of the social media
is enormous but the people using them are limited. It should not be,
what we are fed is an elitist point of view or represents the point of
view of a certain section of the society,” Sibal said after the meeting.


“We
want a constructive dialogue that helps them (social media) empower us,
so that when we move forward in our decision making, it is as informed,
as it can be in any civilised society,” Sibal told reporters here.


Thursday’s meeting was part of the national e-governance plan on using the social media to empower citizens.

“This
discussion and this dialogue is about how the social media can empower
government, because under the normal processes of government, there is
always a limited dialogue with representatives of society because the
means are limited,” said Sibal.


Internet world was in an uproar
last week after a report said Sibal had asked social networking sites
like Facebook and Google, which operate the social video platform
Youtube, to censor content which were offensive to religious sentiments
and degrading some individuals.


In earlier interactions with the
media, the minister had said he was compelled to think of guidelines for
barring objectionable content on social networking sites after they
declined to do anything about the issue.


Sibal said he would continue to hold a dialogue with companies like Facebook, Google and Twitter on the issue.

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