After days of complete silence over the ongoing web censorship lawsuit in the country, against social networking websites, like Google India, Facebook India, among others; here's an update. A court notice sent out, yesterday, confirmed that not only has the next court hearing in the web censorship lawsuit been pushed to May 23, but also the hearing will be presided over by Metropolitan Magistrate Jay Thareja at the Patiala House court, instead of Judge Sudesh Kumar, another magistrate at the court. However, no explanation was provided for the latter, confirms a Wall Street Journal report.
Pushed to May (Image credit: Getty Images)
Those following our reports on the lawsuit proceedings closely, would know that the lawsuit has been a longstanding one between the government and social networking sites, like Google India, Facebook India, YouTube, among others over objectionable content. Over the weeks, the lawsuit has been witnessing several major turnarounds, including Microsoft India and Yahoo! India being let off from the lawsuit, owing to the lack of sufficient evidence to sentence them, since they aren't social networking websites in the first place. Facebook India, had on its part revealed that it could not be held responsible for the content going up on its sites, since the content is put up by the users. Reportedly, the social networking companies were caught quite unawares with the objection raised by Vinay Rai, since the latter directly moved to the government with his complaint, instead of taking it up first with the companies.
Also, most of these social networking sites are of the belief that monitoring content going up on the sites would be a direct attack on the user's freedom to speech and expression, and considering the popularity of these sites, such a move wouldn't be feasible.