Facebook double-standard: ‘Bans BDP – but not al Qaeda’

BIANET 25-10-2013 – “We must use alternative means of communication. Political groups must form their own channels,” said the Alternatif Bilişim Association Chair, Keleş, reacting to Facebook’s decision to close down the page of the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) Istanbul organization.

Keleş claimed that Facebook had double standards in practice, considering that it was acting according to its user license agreement. “Facebook closed down many pages on Kurdish movement for reasons associated with ‘terrorism’.  However, such criteria are not in practice for pages like Al Qaeda’s. Al Qaeda-related posts even show up on AKP pages. But Facebook executes its page administration policy according to the policies of the government. This is hypocritical.

“Facebook works according to an agreement, it is indeed a commercial agreement. Therefore, this is unacceptable but not incomprehensible. Perhaps users may use autonomous networks like Diaspora or Identi.ca. “Political groups can especially form their own social networks against censure. For instance, workers can form up their own social networks.” Previously, Facebook closed down the pages of Yüksekova Haber, Ötekilerin Postası, Yeni Özgür Politika, Kürdi Müzik and other related groups on Kurdish movement including the personal fan pages of deputies Altan Tan, Sırrı Süreya Önder, Hasip Kaplan and Leyla Zana.  Facebook administrator Richard Allan reportedly said the closures were due to “praising of terrorist organizations” and “exposure of illegal organization flags and other related symbols”.