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NEW DELHI: Facebook has responded to Congress’s allegations of bias and interference in India’s affairs, saying it is a “non-partisan” platform that takes allegations of bias “seriously” and that they “denounce hate and bigotry in all forms”. In a letter written on September 1 and addressed to Congress general secretary (organisation) KC Venugopal, the social media giant’s public policy, trust and safety director Neil Potts defended its India team and said it was a “diverse team representing a varied political spectrum” that took decisions, not unilaterally, but by including different views from across teams.
Potts also said Facebook’s community standards prohibit attacks against people based on their protected characteristics, including religion, caste, ethnicity and national origin and added that its latest transparency report had reported removing 22.5 million pieces of hate speech content from April-June in 2020, up from 1.6 million pieces of hate speech content removed in the last quarter of 2017. “We know there is much more to do and will continue to invest our efforts to combat hate speech on our services,” he said. On August 18, Congress had written to Facebook, accusing it of ‘right-wing bias’ and failure to take down hate content allegedly posted by those associated with BJP.
Congress’s data analytics department head Praveen Chakravarty said Congress would wait to see concrete measures being taken by the company.

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