Posted On Tuesday, June 19, 2012 at 09:05:45 AM
New York: Internet giant Google has reported a sharp increase in number of requests from India for online content censorship. The search engine has logged 255 instances to block content, a rise of 49 per cent in the second half of last year.
Google Inc said India’s request formed part of 1,000 demands from governments around the world in the second half of last year to take down items such as YouTube videos and search listings, and it complied with them more than half the time.
India’s objections ranged from blockage of 133 YouTube videos, including 10 made on national security considerations and 77 on defamation, besides 26 web searches and 49 blogs, Google said in its transparency report, which was made public on Sunday.
The Internet giant said political comments were a prime target as the number of requests for the company to remove content from the reach of Internet users jumped manifold.
“We noticed that government agencies from different countries would ask us to remove political content that the users had posted,” a top Google official said. He said the number of content removal requests received by Google in India was 49 per cent higher in the second half of last year than in the first six months.
Google reported that it went along with slightly more than half of the approximately 1,000 requests it received to remove material or links.
As far as user data is concerned, India stood second with more than 2,207 requests of which 66 per cent were compiled with by Google. Washington headed the global list with 6,321 requests.
Google along with some other Internet companies already faces lawsuits in India for content found objectionable on its website. A key issue in the dispute is whether intermediary can be held liable for third party content on its websites.