Kapil Mishra’s anti-CAA speech ‘incitement’ to violence: Zuckerberg | India News


NEW DELHI: He does not name Kapil Mishra. But the BJP politician’s “controversial” speech against anti-CAA protestors seems to have become a yardstick for measuring incitement to violence at Facebook, a leaked audio of CEO Mark Zuckerberg’s interaction with the company’s employees has revealed.
Zuckerberg was trying to explain to Facebook employees why the company decided not to act against US President Donald Trump’s “controversial” comments on the protests following George Floyd’s killing by a cop. He claimed that Trump’s comments did not encourage vigilantism but called for “excessive policing”. Zuckerberg has been drawing flaks from various quarters over Trump’s comments.
“…Our policies around incitement of violence, you know… have some clear precedents… There have been examples of government officials around the world, we’ve taken them down. And there have been cases in India, for example, where someone said, ‘Hey, if the police don’t take care of this, our supporters will get in there and clear the streets’,” Zuckerberg told nearly 25,000 employees, in the wake of an internal churn at the company.
“That is kind of encouraging supporters to go do that in a more direct way, and we took that down. So we have a precedent for that,” he said. Zuckerberg seemed to be referring to a video of Kapil Mishra which was posted on February 23, a day before Trump was to visit India.
In the video, which was later taken down, Mishra could be seen saying, “Till US President is in India, we are leaving the area peacefully. After that we won’t listen to you (police) if the roads are not vacated by then.” The video was shot in Jaffrabad in north-east Delhi, which had later erupted in communal riots that killed over 50 people.
Facebook had taken down the video during the riots as it violated its “Violence and Criminal Behaviour Policy”. These set of community standards aim to prevent “potential offline harm that may be related to content on Facebook” by prohibiting people from making statements of intent to commit violence, issuing calls for action of violence and making statements advocating for violence, among other things.
Facebook’s handling of Floyd’s killing has sparked an online debate about the responsibilities social media companies have when it comes regulating content. The social media giant decided not to take action against some of Trump’s post, one of which “justified” protesters being shot. “When the looting starts, the shooting starts,” Trump had written in one of the posts.
While Twitter had put a label on the post, stating that it “glorifies” violence, Facebook had not acted against it.
Following this, several employees had taken to social media to express their anguish over Facebook’s ‘passive response’, over a dozen participated in a virtual walkout to protest against the company’s stand and some even resigned.
On June 2, Timothy J Aveni, a software engineer at Facebook base in Menlo Park resigned, and wrote a post on the platform explaining his decision. “For years, President Trump has enjoyed an exception to Facebook’s Community Standards… Mark always told us that he would draw the line at speech that calls for violence. He showed us on Friday that this was a lie,” he wrote.



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