Facebook wins case vs Syrian refugee in Merkel selfie

The court ruled that the US social media giant was not obliged to actively search out and delete defamatory posts, like those that had falsely linked the claimant to Islamist attacks and violent crimes.

Facebook wins case vs Syrian refugee in Merkel selfie

World Bulletin / News Desk

Facebook clinched victory Tuesday in a German court case brought by a Syrian refugee whose selfie with Chancellor Angela Merkel had made him the target of racist trolls.

Anas Modamani, 19, had sought an injunction demanding that the company, represented by Facebook Ireland Limited, stop the spread of such defamatory fake news, which have been shared countless times.

The company has in the past blocked such content, but only upon request -- like posts which had falsely linked Modamani to delinquents who tried to set fire to a homeless man in Berlin last Christmas.

Modamani and his lawyer Chan-jo Jun had demanded that Facebook actively search out and take down all slanderous posts using the famous selfie images -- not just those they had flagged to the company.

They argued Facebook could use its algorithms to automatically identify them, just as it does for nudity and copyrighted music.

"It must become more costly to break the law," Jun had tweeted ahead of the court ruling in the southern city of Wurzburg.

The court however found it was unclear whether Facebook could indeed conduct such pro-active searches "without major technical hurdles", and said this question may have to be settled by another court in the future.

Last Mod: 07 Mart 2017, 17:05
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