Friday, May 30, 2008

"I do believe that even the terrorist have the right to freedom of speech"

The title of this post comes from a comment on a post at Mashable on how YouTube should deal with terrorist videos. We don't want government to get involved in this. Sites like YouTube are free to implement whatever content policies they want and so it doesn't violate anyone's rights if they establish rules that restrict the kinds of content they will host, including removing videos by terrorist groups. But they need to understand how radical Islamists are using new media to attract new recruits, shape the mediaspace and generally wage a propaganda war against societies that value freedom of speech. Read the whole post.

There is truly a moral imperative (something Google claims to be guided by) to remove videos glorifying and promoting death and violence, not to mention a terms of service policy dictating that videos for shock value will not be tolerated. Google and YouTube’s inability to form cohesive and ethical corporate policy is finally coming home to roost, and it’s going to end up screwing with my free speech when Congress overwhelmingly passes a bill that undoubtedly will require some flunky on Capitol Hill (or worse, the Pentagon) to hit approve on every YouTube video I upload.

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