BusinessDay

Moscow opens ‘murder’ case against Meta – report

The Russian government has opened up a case against Meta (Facebook and Instagram) for calling for the murder of Russians, reports are saying.

Earlier in the week the global tech giant Meta bent its rules regarding violent speech on its platforms, allowing statements such as “death to Russian invaders,” in response to Moscow’s assault on Ukraine.

In a temporary change to its hate speech policy, Facebook and Instagram users in some countries will be allowed to call for violence against Russians and Russian soldiers in the context of Moscow’s assault on Ukraine, according to one of Meta’s internal company emails, AFP reported.

“As a result of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, we have temporarily permitted forms of political expression that would normally be prohibited, such as violent speech such as “death to the Russian invaders. We will continue to reject credible calls for violence against Russian civilians” a Meta statement read.

According to a series of internal emails seen by Reuters to its content moderators, the social media company is temporarily allowing some posts calling for the death of Russian President Vladimir Putin or Belarusian President Alexander Lukashenko in countries such as Russia, Ukraine, and Poland.

Read also: Russia – Ukraine Conflict: UK sanctions 386 Russian lawmakers

In a recent change to the company’s rules on violence and incitement, one email stated that calls for the leaders’ deaths will be allowed unless they include other targets or have two indicators of credibility, such as the location or method.

Calls for violence against Russians are permitted, according to the emails, when the post clearly refers to the attack on Ukraine.

They claimed that calls for violence against Russian soldiers were permissible because they were acting as a proxy for the Russian military, but that it did not apply to prisoners.

This has prompted Moscow to open up a case against the global tech giant for the murder of its people and military force, AFP reported.

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