Twitter facing technical difficulties in blocking offensive webpages

Twitter has informed the Department of Electronics and Information Technology that it's facing technical difficulties in blocking few web pages containing morphed and inflammatory images – there are about 28 such web pages, according to reports. The government, however, maintains its stand that Twitter will have to remove the offensive web pages or will have to face punitive action. Twitter is now seeking time to adhere to the task of blocking pages with offensive content. Reports now suggest that government officials are viewing this move by the popular microblog as a time buying ploy. The government wants Twitter to respond in clear terms, whether it would block the web pages or not, and here they re-iterated on the fact that if Twitter failed to block the web pages, it would have to face action. 


Twitter unable to block some web pages (Image credit: Getty Images)



The government has been at the task of shutting down websites carrying offensive material in the light of the NE exodus in the country. The Centre has come down heavily on the channels it believes are playing a role in triggering fear and leading to the exodus. It has been found that morphed images and videos were uploaded to these websites with an aim to incite the Muslim community in the country. The count of blocked web pages is now as high as 310. 


Earlier reports had established that both Facebook and YouTube informed the government that the offensive content uploaded on their sites originated from Pakistan. An IBN Live report at the time even quoted the Department of Electronics and Information Technology (DEIT) as saying, "The initial response from international social networking sites indicates that such content has been hosted from outside the country and to a large extent from a neighbouring country (Pakistan)."


Reports had also confirmed that one of the blocked web pages was created in the name of cricketer Imran Khan's political party Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf. In its report at the time, Times of India had reported that the blocked web pages were involved in spreading hate messages and fake videos. Elaborating further, the report added that all the web pages that have been blocked were created between July 20-24, at a time when the disruptions at Kokrajhar and Chirang districts were at their peak. Interestingly, it has also been found that most of the web pages were uploaded on different host sites in Pakistan.  


Also, a part of the blocked web pages list that have been known to have originated in Pakistan, were offensive 'postings' at as well as fake images using the name of Jammat-i-Islami Pakistan -  another Pakistani political outfit. Further, the report pointed that several web pages using the name of Pakistan Tehreek-e-Insaf (PTI) like tehreek-e-insaaf and tehreekeinsaaf.kohat were created. Quoting an official, the report added, "These have nothing to do with the original website of Imran Khan's PTI. It appears that the bloggers might have created this in the name of a celebrity ( mran Khan) just to attract more page views. Investigation is going on to reach the real culprits in India where they picked up those morphed pictures and circulated them in Bangalore, Hyderabad, Pune and Mumbai to create panic among people of northeast region in the wake of Assam violence."