Friday, Oct 07, 2022
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Russian Invasion Of Ukraine: Facebook, Instagram Allow Hate Messages Calling For Death Of Putin

According to a recent email sent to the moderators, the temporary changes in policy introduced by Meta Platforms on calls for violence to Russian soldiers are applicable to Armenia, Azerbaijan, Estonia, Georgia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, and Ukraine.

Meta Platforms, owner of Facebook and Instagram
Meta Platforms, owner of Facebook and Instagram AP

Amid soaring tension in the geopolitical landscape owing to Russin invasion of Ukraine, Meta Platforms, the owner of Facebook and Instagram, announced certain amendments in the organization's hate speech policies facilitating temporary allowances for violent speech targeting Russia.

However, the tech giant also made it very clear that it won't support calls for violence against Russian civilians.

"As a result of the Russian invasion of Ukraine we have temporarily made allowances for forms of political expression that would normally violate our rules like violent speech such as 'death to the Russian invaders.' We still won't allow credible calls for violence against Russian civilians," a Meta spokesperson said in a statement.

As per media reports, internal mails regarding amendment in hate speech policies pertaining both to Russian soldiers and to Russians in connection to Ukraine invasion were recently sent to the moderators of the Meta Platforms. 

The amended policy enables the users of Facebook and Instagram in countries including Russia, Ukraine and Poland to call for the deaths of Russia's President Putin and Belarusian President Lukashenko.

The e-mails also had it mentioned that the temporary changes in policy on calls for violence to Russian soldiers are applicable to Armenia, Azerbaijan, Estonia, Georgia, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, and Ukraine.

As per BBC, the internal emails reportedly said that calls for the leaders' deaths will be allowed unless they contain other targets, or included a location or methods.

Also, calls for violences are allowed only when the posts are made in direct connection to the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Following this massive announcement made by the US Based tech giant, the Russian Embassy in US has urged Washington to intervene and stop the "extremist activities" of Meta.

"Users of Facebook & Instagram did not give the owners of these platforms the right to determine the criteria of truth and pit nations against each other," the embassy said on Twitter in a message that was also shared by their India office.

Citing 26 cases of "discrimination" against Russian media by Facebook since October 2020, last week Russia announced that it was blocking Facebook and its platforms.

"As a result of the Russian invasion of Ukraine we have temporarily made allowances for forms of political expression that would normally violate our rules like violent speech such as 'death to the Russian invaders.' We still won't allow credible calls for violence against Russian civilians," a Meta spokesperson said in a statement.

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