Eric Schmidt, Google India clear air on anti-Islam video

By : |September 26, 2012 0

[image_library_tag 642/18642, align=”left” title=”Google” alt=”Google” border=”0″ vspace=”10″ hspace=”10″ complete=”complete” ,default]BANGALORE, INDIA: Freedom of expression must be the most emphatic rhetoric that is creating ripples across the world over the last couple of weeks.

More so, after the video Innocence of Muslims, reportedly produced by one Sam Bacile, went viral on YouTube and kicked up a furore not just in the cyberspace, but across primarily the Gulf countries, apart from other parts of the world.

Following protests from across the globe, Google, which runs the popular video-sharing website, decided to exercise restraint by blocking access to the controversial video in countries, including those from the Gulf, Egypt and India.

Yet, the raging fire is not doused completely, with differing views still coming up on whether the video content that mocks Prophet Mohammed was intended to be incendiary to stir up emotions of a section of people or it is just someone’s interpretation of accepted beliefs and faith.

On Thursday, Google executive chairman Eric Schmidt emphasized that the content didn’t violate YouTube’s set of criteria and hence, was made accessible to many regions. "Google has a very clear view on this, which is that we believe the answer to bad speech is more speech," he reportedly said.

Also read: Innocence of Muslims: Cleric slams Google

"We obviously do not endorse the use of the video or these ideas… hatred or violence or anything, but we openly believe that the best answer to it is more speech, not the other way around."

"Some countries disagree. There are some places where we had to actually block access to that video," some reports suggested him saying.

As far as Google’s policy and regulations for contents that can be posted on YouTube are concerned, the message is simple and clear: If these videos adhere to its global guidelines, Google has no issues with it.

While Google has clearly stipulated these guidelines, which are not necessarily region-specific, but applicable across the world, videos and other contents uploaded on YouTube do have to abide by the local laws of the land.

In case of violations of Google’s policy and regulations or if it finds some content breaching local laws, Google does initiate necessary actions. These include blocking access to contents, which are not found appropriate in any way.

"We do, at times, block content in launched countries in response to a court order or other valid legal process," stated a Google India official spokesperson.

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