Facebook Neutrality Question: Social media companies have adopted dual standards in Indian politics and have been accused of being close to BJP politicians
Facebook is involved in political controversy in India. According to The Wall Street Journal, Facebook RSS and BJP helped dominate because they were ideologically close to it. And now the opposition is taking a positive stance on this issue.
A report published last week in The Wall Street Journal quoted current and former Facebook employees as saying that the social media platform ignored nasty posts and sectarian content from BJP leaders and activists. It was. It has been. Please note that Facebook also owns WhatsApp and Instagram.
Question mark on Facebook’s claim of neutrality
Analysts say the claims made by The Wall Street Journal on Facebook cast doubt on the claims of impartiality. The allegations also raised suspicions on Facebook regarding the 2014 and 2019 election campaigns. In both elections, the BJP won a landslide victory.
The well-known journalist and writer Prango Juha Thackeray examined the relationship between BJP and Facebook in his book published last year. According to Thackeray, the results of recent parliamentary elections were strongly influenced by Facebook and WhatsApp. He told the BBC that the Wall Street Journal article only confirmed his research on Facebook’s role in India.
(India has 400 million Facebook users and 900 million voters). Misuse of this platform is allowed before, after and during elections. It’s certainly big who voted and how. It’s influencing. In short, how Facebook and WhatsApp operate today is a threat to democracy. ”Not only in India but around the world.
Facebook double standard?
Critics say Facebook has set different guidelines for each country. Facebook surrenders to powers in other countries, but in the United States, where Facebook is based, Facebook is far from politics. This is the double standard.
Parliamentary leader Rahul Gandhi has accused the Modi government of controlling Facebook and WhatsApp. He asked the Joint Parliamentary Commission to investigate.
However, BJP leader and federal minister Ravi Shankar Prasad defended the government. He said his government has no role in managing Facebook or WhatsApp. Prasad tweeted.
Facebook denied the allegations in a statement issued by its US headquarters. We prohibit the behaviour and content of hatred that incites violence, the statement said. This is our worldwide policy. We are not affiliated with any political party supporters.
However, Facebook recognizes that more needs to be done to avoid such problems, the company said. The statement said.
Check the proximity of Facebook and BJP
Thackeray wasn’t surprised by the news of the relationship between Facebook and the BJP government. Many things now that foreign newspapers have raised the issue. Yes, there is a lot of interest in the media, “he says.
Thackeray told the BBC that the friendship between Facebook and BJP is very old. Before the Lok Sabha election, when Modi came to power in 2014, there was a big relationship between the two.
He states: When Modi was the Prime Minister of Gujarat in 2013, there was a great relationship between Facebook and the BJP. I wrote about how some of Facebook’s senior executives worked with BJP’s IT cell, his social media department, and later at the PMO with people near Modi.
The Wall Street Journal quoted Facebook senior executives as saying that if the platform acts against BJP workers’ hatred posts and other violations of the law, it will affect the company’s business outlook in the country. .. The article also states that Facebook has a “tailored model” that supports the BJP. However, the BJP is currently denying allegations that Facebook helped them.
Is Facebook a Threat to Democracy?
“Parliamentarians are generally very aware that what social media does is a threat to democracy,” said Harriet Hermann, chairman of the British Human Rights Commission.
After many such cases, there is increasing pressure on Facebook and WhatsApp to improve their work. Users of other social media platforms like Twitter have advised Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to fix a flaw in his company in India. However, Twitter has also been accused of corruption.
Zuckerberg was recently criticized for not taking action against US President Donald Trump’s office. In the early days of Facebook, 30 employees wrote an open letter stating that it was unreasonable for Facebook to refuse to modify Trump’s post. Americans are at risk they have already seen. The letter blamed Facebook on a double basis.
Social media platforms have internal guidelines for hatred and violent content and are taking action against them. But in this case, they rely heavily on consumers to warn of rule violations.
Zuckerberg recently told Israeli historian Joel Noah Harari that user privacy and freedom of expression are important to Facebook. However, Harare is different. In these cases, Facebook left everything to the user, he said. The common people often do not know that they are being used, so he has to take these things one step further. He said the average user doesn’t even have a way to find fake news.
The purpose of social media is just to make money
According to Thackeray, social media has no political or other purposes.
Facebook recently invested Rs 43,574 in the Reliance Geo Platform in India to grow its business in India.
India is Facebook’s largest market for users. It reaches 25% of the country’s population. By 2023, it could reach 31% of the population, but the Watts App’s reach is even higher.