Tuesday, October 10, 2006
Govt Petition against an Orkut Community
I am regular user of Orkut, a great networking site, which is now run by Google(taken over). Orkut allows people to create different communities and have some common discussions among people.
As this is an un-managed commiunity, with time there have been several 'displeasing and 'hurting' communties as well that have formed.
Ofcourse 'displeasing' and 'hurting' are relative terms . What might be displeasing to me, may not be for someone else.
Same is the case of the community 'We hate India' in orkut, which has a group of Pakistanis in it.
The news is that Mumbai Hight court/Maharashtra Govt has issued a notice to google for spreading hatred about India by it's social networking service.
Actually there are several such groups in Orkut which are anti-india, but i am not sure how the Govt pin pointed this group alone.
The main reason could be that this shows a picture of our national flag being burnt.
In general I feel the Govt should not interfere too much in such open communities and stop people from expressing their ideas. At this same time, in this specific scenario i am happy that this happened.
Because the lazy Orkut Administrators needed this shock. The orkut site provides with an option called 'Report as Bogus' where in people can complain against a specific community, if it's hurting sentiments of the people. This is as shown in pic above
And i have seen that there has been many and many discussions among people on this community 'We hate India' and many of us compained as well.
But Orkut did not take any corrective action. If they had taken the right action , at the right time then they could have avoided this court case.
So i think this petition would make the orkut administrators more smarter and act on complaints of the users more quickly.
But what's surprising me is that the specific community still exists now. I expected Google to act immediately and remove it temporarily atleast.
But as far as the Govt is concerned, I think it's better it interferes Only when sites like Orkut do not take any action inspite of people's complaints (like this case) only. Except in such cases, it's better Govt doesn't interfere in things like this and let it be managed by people themselves. The simple reason being there is no limit to screening the internet and Govt will only complicate things.
The funny part here is...the petition says that the government should "appoint a 'controller' under the Information Technology Act-2000 to regulate all such communities being in operation on the internet.
"Hahaha. I just can't imagine the plight of the person who would be doing this crazy job.
Btw...I think our High court. doesn't know one thing. People can join Orkut only on invitation, not by creating an account for themselves like any other site.Now who will invite these 'Controllers' into Orkut ;)