Today, Indonesia said that it will call the representatives of the social media services, including Google, and demand for the removal of obscene contents. This followed yesterday’s threat of the nation to shut down WhatsApp.
In fact, the internet is partly censored in the country – and the latest action directs against its own gradual conservatism growth. Semuel Pangerapan, an executive of communication and informatics department of Indonesia, said that they are to ‘call all the providers including Google to clean up their network.
Regarding the threat on WhatsApp, Pangerapan strictly said that the message platform has to ‘follow the rules of the host.’ In response, WhatsApp said that they couldn’t monitor GIFs for its message encryption, and these GIFs are provided by third-party services in the app.
Tenor Inc, a third party for WhatsApp, said today that they already provided a fix for the relevant content issues. Another third part, Giphy Inc of New York, kept themselves unresponsive to requests for comment. Giphy is known to offer filters for inappropriate contents.
Coming back to Indonesia’s warning, the most populous Muslim-majority country did not target Gboard of Google, but it should be separately installed on most devices – according to the norms.
Furthermore, a research by Tor Project published in May states says that Indonesia is into blocking access for her citizens – to the websites providing criticism on Islam, sex education, and dating services.
In 2014, Indonesia was ranked fourth after USA, India, and Brazil; in terms of Facebook usage, with 69 million users being active monthly.
Then, there were criticisms of Indonesia’s actions on blocking websites, but the nation came in a settlement with some of the tech companies. Bans were thusly revoked for the social media providers in the country, as cooperation with the regulators has been agreed.
All said and done, it’s interesting to see how the leading social media service providers of the world respond to Indonesia’s summoning, and how they take actions against the growing abusive contents.
Among the globally shared contents of today, while subjects like sex education are essential for the future generations, there are numerous other subjects that hamper cultures and beliefs – which need to be taken note of. We hope that the leading social media platforms step up in accordance with the same.