Should there be a censor for Social Networks?

By Anonya Roy, SiliconIndia   |   Thursday, 27 January 2011, 03:41 Hrs
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Should there be a censor for Social Networks?
Bangalore: The past few days have seen a lot of action on and off Facebook. A Kashmiri lad was arrested for creating an "anti-national" group on the social networking site. This incident was followed by a FIR being lodged by an IPS Officer against Facebook and the creators of the "I Hate Gandhi" group on Facebook. Cut to present, the question arises as to what should be done to curb these anti-social elements who abuse these kind of platforms? While there are a lot of prospects of using the social networking sites in a positive way, the opposites also exist. Agreed that there are just a handful of them, but these few have the capacity to cause much headache. There are some groups of people who do things for the sake of fun but do not realise that they might end up hurting people's emotions, religious beliefs and sentiments. And these may well end up in riots and bigger crisis. There are countries like China, Saudi Arabia, Egypt who resorted to the extreme step of banning the sites like Google, Facebook and Twitter that ired the administrations. But is it possible in a democratic country like ours? India entrusts its citizens with the freedom of speech and expression. However, some black sheep spoil the case for us by abusing this freedom. On one hand we have positive news like many awareness programs being carried on via the social networking sites, news like killing of a teenage boy in Britain that was apparently planned on social networking website Facebook is chilling. So what is the solution for the issue at hand? Should countries assign censor boards to take up the cause of monitoring what is being put up on the social networking services or the sites themselves should launch a tirade against the offending people?