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Facebook releases censorship data

One of the world's most popular social media sites has released information about government requests to censor content posted on the site.

Facebook has over one billion members, all of whom share various forms of content with one another. Be it a link to a website, communications between individuals, or marketing between a brand and an individual, the avenues through which people can interact are multifaceted. This has helped make the Internet more interactive and gives people the capability to connect within one another no matter where in the world they are logged on.

This online community has become a place where people choose to express themselves and offer their opinions on anything from politics to the newest meme. The case of the former has helped encourage political revolution in places like Tunisia and Egypt, but it is this mobilizing power that has many governments scared when it comes to social media.

Facebook posts censorship requests
Policy Mic reported that the social media outlet recently published the number of requests it received from governments to remove content in an effort to maintain a level of transparency about its actions. Facebook has been particularly outspoken against the kind of surveillance policies that the National Security Administration has been using on U.S. citizens and people around the world.

It should come as no surprise then that the governments with the most requests for removal are among some of the most limiting when it comes to online freedom. By and far the largest requests for removal came from India, a country that has sought to implement a similar surveillance program to that of the United States. The country made 4,765 content restriction requests on Facebook.

The next highest country for requests come from Turkey at roughly 2,014. The country has had its own problems when it comes to online freedom. In the run up to local elections within the country, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan banned Twitter and YouTube after content was released that implicated him in a corruption scandal. The Turkish government primarily asked to ban posts that "defamed" the Turkish state or the first Turkish President, Mustafa Kemal Atatürk.

These kinds of policies hurt Internet freedom on a broad scale, but also many of the capabilities that make social media such a popular and lucrative tool.

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