Facebook has about 15000 content reviewers around the world who scans posts which are reported by users or found using the Fb’s algorithmic system. If a post doesn’t follow Facebook’s global policy, they label and take such posts to the next level of “content policy teams”. For India, these “locally illegal” markers are used to flag posts for further review, without the knowledge of users or any input from local law enforcement agencies.
As per the company’s global policy, the company has stated before that it doesn’t take down posts which attacks a religion or belief as hate speech even in India. However, the new findings show how the company is still tracking such content in India. National daily Indian express posed questions about locally illegal content with respect to India, but in the section called “Operational Guidelines”, the document gives moderators examples of content to flag – maps of Kashmir and Aksai Chain, posts comparing deities divisively or depicting Muhammad, and images replacing the wheel on the Tricolour with Gandhi.
Under the ‘national border’ section, posts that are “supportive” of a separate Kashmir state, of Pakistan’s claim to Kashmir and Siachen, of China’s claim to Aksai Chin, Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Nagaland, or Tripura, are to be flagged. Moderators are to look out for terms such as: “Azad Kashmir, Free Kashmir, Kashmir belongs to Pakistan… Look for maps invading territories, people protesting, etc”. It goes on to say that images of Mohammad may violate Section 295 of the IPC, which prohibits outraging religious feelings by insulting religious beliefs.