|
|
|
|
|
4th Zilhaj 1435 | Tuesday, Sep 30, 2014
Science

'Freedom of expression under threat in digital age'

Wednesday, 16 January 2013
Comments(0)
New Delhi, January 16:

With social networking site Facebook boasting of 1 billion members globally and micro-blogging site Twitter claiming millions, opinion was divided on whether the freedom of expression was under threat in the digital age.

"Censorship of content should be the last resort as curbing a particular content online actually amplifies its spread over the internet," said Sunil Abraham from Centre for Internet and Society.

He was speaking at a panel discussion organised by London based Index on Censorship and the Editors Guild of India on the issue at the India International Centre Tuesday evening.

"The government has refused to amend Section 66(A) of the IT Act which is used to curb free speech on the net," said Guild chief TN Ninan who moderated the debate. "The law treats digital media differently than the print media," he said.

Director of Free Speech Debate, Oxford University, Timothy Garton Ash said, "There was no threat to the freedom of speech as internet was actually an opportunity for spreading freedom of expression."

India with the large number of net users could act as swing state between two extremes of China which is trying to control the net and the US which champions free speech, he said.

"The question is what are the legitimate limits of free speech rather than asking for unlimited speech," said Ash.

Ajit Balakrishnan, CEO and founder of online portal rediff.com, said "there was a sense of powerlessness among nation states as only local laws applied to any such violations."

He said the internet was not so democratic as it sounded as the actual numbers of users who posted content on Facebook were just 8-9 million while the rest just watched. The same was with Twitter with just 7-8 percent users actually posting messages.

Kirsty Hughes, CEO, Index on Censorship, said "freedom of speech was universal" while noting a "worrying trend that increasingly governments were moving to control the internet."

"The risks of such controls are that we could have a much more controlled, censored and fragmented internet," she said.

Ramanjit Singh Chima of Google India stressed on the need to have laws to protect internet freedom as such curbs affected livelihood of many users and contributed to local economies.

He said the internet allowed people to instantly collaborate and publish critical information during emergency situations.

IANS

Latest News

Maoists kill tribal in Odisha

Maoist guerrillas killed a tribal man in Odisha by slitting his throat after accusing him of being a police informer, an official said on Tu ...

Vadodara riots: Over 200 held, situation r...

More than 200 people have been arrested in Vadodara town in Gujarat after days of communal violence, police said on Monday. Although no f ...

CBI arrests person with fake currency

CBI has arrested another fake currency racketeer for allegedly possessing fake currency notes having face value of Rs 4.98 lakh. "CBI int ...

Related News

Human genome shaped by evolutionary race with itself

An evolutionary race between rival elements within the genomes of primates drove the evolution of co ...

Moon to be turned into giant particle detector

Scientists plan to turn the Moon into a giant particle detector to gain insight into the origin of U ...

Now, 'mantis shrimp-inspired' camera that can detect cancer

Scientists have developed a new camera which can detect cancer and monitor the activity of exposed n ...

Post new comment

To combat spam, please enter the code in the image.

Rs. 26720 (Per 10g)

Opinion Poll
Do you think Satya Nadella's meeting with KCR is a booster for IT in Telangana state?
YesNoCan't say

Matrimony | Photos | Videos | Search | Polls | Archives | Advertise | Letters

© The Siasat Daily, 2012. All rights reserved.
Jawaharlal Nehru Road, Abids, Hyderabad - 500001, AP, India
Tel: +91-40-24744180, Fax: +91-40-24603188
contact@siasat.com