Well, yes, obviously

Facebook only limits holocaust denial to where it’s illegal to deny the holocaust.

The documents provided to moderators make quite clear that Facebook does not want to remove Holocaust denial content in any country where it is illegal. But it appears to make exceptions in four countries – those where the site is likely to face prosecution or be sued. Facebook explains it deals with ‘locally illegal content’ by ‘geo-blocking’ or ‘hiding’ offensive material in the countries where it is likely to provoke a reaction. Facebook said the figures set out in the documents were not accurate, but declined to elaborate.

What else does anyone want them to do?

An Austrian court has ruled that the local Green Party leader cannot be called a “corrupt bumpkin.” And insisted that this applies to Facebook world wide.

We would prefer that system, would we? Where 192 different jurisdictions get to decide what everyone in all 192 jurisdictions gets to read?

11 comments on “Well, yes, obviously

  1. What else does anyone want them to do?

    Arrest foreign people for doing acts that are perfectly legal in said foreign countries? There is a comity among states that means they tend to recognise things like each other’s marriages. A legal marriage in Saudi Arabia is legal in Britain even if it would not be legal in Britain if carried out in the UK for instance. But there is also the rule that says countries respect each others sovereignty by not applying their rules to other countries.

    That has been eroded of late. Starting with the War Crimes Trials after WW2 I guess. But taken off since the Baby Boomers have got in power. So it is illegal for a British person to have sex with an underage girl in Cambodia even though British law does not usually apply to Cambodia. For the Left all questions are questions of power. Not of justice or rights. So it only matters what they can do to people they do not like. Not whether doing so would be just.

    Still it is only going to get worse.

  2. Presumably Facebook also wants to operate in those countries where Holocaust denial is mandatory.

  3. It’s all about enforcement though. The British paedophile/hebephile/ephebophile won’t be prosecuted in Cambodia but only if he goes to the UK (and the evidence follows him)

    So Austria can say that if Facebook doesn’t comply it can’t operate in Austria, then Facebook can either choose to withdraw from Austria or comply.

    The US likes to enforce its laws worldwide and currently it makes more sense for firms to comply rather than withdraw from the US market, so we all suffer (or profit).

  4. I’ve never seen the least reason to wonder whether the holocaust happened, save one. Namely, that it is illegal in many jurisdictions to wonder out loud whether the holocaust happened.

  5. John – “So Austria can say that if Facebook doesn’t comply it can’t operate in Austria, then Facebook can either choose to withdraw from Austria or comply.”

    David Irving is an unpleasant man but he was arrested in Heathrow. Germany has tried and jailed people for things they have said on the internet outside of Germany. If an American Holocaust denier flew through Britain we would probably extradite him.

    It is not America enforcing its laws all over the world. Europe is much worse. Look at Pinochet.

  6. Farsebook produces no content. It’s the sewer not the shit. So I can’t see how e.g. Austria can police it as if it’s the NYT.

  7. How can Facebook “”withdraw”” from Austria? How does Facebook stop an Austrian sitting in his Austrian house typing at his Austrian computer into his Austrian web browser’s address bar http://facebook.com ? How does Facebook – as opposed to the Austrian telecos – stop that Austrian’s IP packets being routed to Facebook’s servers and the reply packets being routed back to that Austrian’s computer?

  8. jgh – GeoIP. They’ll be using a database that maps chunks of IPs to geographic locations at approximately city-level accuracy, so they’ll know that the origin is in Austria: they could just return 403 Forbidden, or serve up a simple “Tut uns leid, ba-ba” page, to Austrian IPs.

    Wouldn’t work for VPNs or Tor, but would certainly cover 95% of use.

  9. Hopper,

    Geoip regularly fails to recognise me as being in the UK when I’m on my wifi dongle, despite the fact it’s a UK ISP.

    I have low confidence in its efficiency.

  10. David Irving is an unpleasant man but he was arrested in Heathrow.

    No he wasn’t.

    If an American Holocaust denier flew through Britain we would probably extradite him.

    No we wouldn’t. Holocaust denial is a crime in neither the USA nor the UK.

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