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Google makes a quick U-turn on Blogger Porn Policy


Mountain View’s Internet search giant faced an embarrassing situation after it had been made to go back on its Blogger porn ban decision. Google, on Tuesday, had come out with a top-down policy that was planned to be unilaterally implemented on Blogger’s users. The policy stated that all blogs with adult content on their pages would be turned into private websites inaccessible through a general public search.google-blogger-porn-content-ban

Google had always prided itself on the free availability of information on the World Wide Web, and easy access to information was the philosophy that guided Google’s actions until now. So the move to ban Blogger porn was received with surprise and criticism. This move by Google received humongous negative feedback from users and free speech proponents alike. The reasoning proffered by Google to implement its blogger ban was flayed, especially when Google makes available in its search results, links to so many porn websites around the internet.

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On Tuesday, Google altered its long-held stance by deciding that by 23rd March, 2015, no explicit material would be allowed on Blogger, unless it provided to users, ‘public benefit, for example in artistic, educational, documentary, or scientific contexts’. The extent or the boundaries of such ‘public benefit’ would have been left to Google’s discretion. This was sure to lead the Mountain View tech giant to become the final arbiter of content on the internet, thus posing a severe danger to internet’s integrity.

Sensing that free speech and expression and people’s sense of autonomy will be severely imperiled in the wake of one supra-company becoming an extra judicial authority on internet censorship and content, active bloggers, users and free speech proponents took Google to the task. The Internet Users Association condemned Google’s decision as an ‘attack’ on freedom of expression. Their arguments, as explained by the Association’s president, Mr. Victor Domingo, was based on the notion that not all nudity may be construed as pornography. Blogging with nude pictures or erotica is also a way for many to express their niche identities on the internet and bring hinter sexual groups to a mainstream conversation. All of these would be severely restricted if Google were allowed to go ahead with its draconian policy.

In the face of such resistance and clear logic, Google has now backtracked on its decision. It has also announced that it will continue with its existing policy. As per the existing policy, visitors to a blog are cautioned about the blog containing explicit material. The message seeks a confirmation from the user, before the user is allowed to proceed to access the blog. Thus, all the blogs whether adult or not are accessible through a general public search on Google. However, Google has made it clear that blogs promoting commercial pornography will be made private and will not gain the benefit accorded to other adult blogs as per its compromise.


About Sara Rose

rose@thenextdigit.com'
She has spent the past 4 years playing the role of an IT consultant, and has now joined The Next Digit as a full time blogger. Her current profession is a result of her deep experience in computer gadgets, laptops, gaming accessories and other tech updates.

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