Google has refused to accept the request of the White House to take down the U.S made anti-Islamic film, ‘Innocence of Muslims’ from YouTube after the film caused a lot of stir in the Muslim world, including the violence in Libya that took the lives of four Americans. The tech giant, however, plans to restrict access to the film in certain countries.
"We work hard to create a community everyone can enjoy and which also enables people to express different opinions," the YouTube statement said according to the Associated Press. "This can be a challenge because what's OK in one country can be offensive elsewhere. This video — which is widely available on the Web — is clearly within our guidelines and so will stay on YouTube. However, we've restricted access to it in countries where it is illegal such as India and Indonesia as well as in Libya and Egypt, given the very sensitive situations in these two countries. This approach is entirely consistent with principles we first laid out in 2007."
While the surge of violence is thought to be provoked by the controversial video, the U.S. and Libyan officials are looking into the possibility whether the militants had motives other than the rage the anti-Islamic film caused. While there is no proof suggesting otherwise, some think that the al-Qaida might have had some kind of involvement in the attacks on U.S. Consulate in Benghazi.
YouTube’s guidelines say that while it encourages free speech, the website does not allow hate speeches to continue running on YouTube. "'Hate speech' refers to content that promotes hatred against members of a protected group," the guidelines say. However, it remains in YouTube’s hands whether it considers a speech a ‘hate speech’ or not, since there is a very fine line differentiating both.
Meanwhile, the media speculate on the movie's author. Nakoula Basseley Nakoula is the alleged California based financer, script writer and director of the anti-Islamic film that sparked protests in more than 30 Muslim countries. Nakoula could face a prison term if his involvement in the film is proved.