NLSIU VC Sudhir Krishnaswamy on independent content oversight board announced by Facebook to decide on deletion of controversial posts
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NLSIU VC Sudhir Krishnaswamy on independent content oversight board announced by Facebook to decide on deletion of controversial posts

On Wednesday, Facebook announced the first 20 members to be part of the board, which comprises of lawyers, journalists, human rights activists, academics and others from around the world.

Bar & Bench

Vice-Chancellor of the National Law School of India University (NLSIU), Bangalore, Prof Sudhir Krishnaswamy, is one of 20 members announced by Facebook yesterday as part of an independent content oversight board.

This board would have the power to decide on the deletion of controversial posts on the social media platform, overturning the company's own content moderation decisions.

It is reported that the board members would decide on content-related appeals from Facebook and Instagram users, and deal with questions from Facebook as well. Final decisions on whether the content should be deleted or not would be based on group discussions.

Members were selected for the board from around the world, and include journalists, lawyers, human rights activists, judges and academics. It is also reported that eventually, the board will have around 40 members, which Facebook will help pick.

Krishnaswamy is an alumnus of NLSIU, Bangalore having graduated in 1998. He has been a Teaching Fellow in Law at the Pembroke College at Oxford University, an Assistant Professor at NLSIU, a Professor at the West Bengal National University of Juridical Sciences, Kolkata, and Dean of Azim Premji University. He is a co-founder of the Centre for Law & Policy Research (CLPR).

He was appointed as Vice-Chancellor of NLSIU, India's oldest national law university, in September last year.

Sudhir has also worked on the Prime Minister’s Committee on Infrastructure and the Kasturirangan Committee on Governance of Bangalore

In November 2018, Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg announced that the company is looking to constitute a body for independent governance and oversight, whose decisions would be transparent and binding, opining that,

"Facebook should not make so many important decisions about free expression and safety on our own."

In a broader blueprint outlined for content governance and enforcement at the time, Zuckerberg further stated,

"Over time, I believe this body will play an important role in our overall governance. Just as our board of directors is accountable to our shareholders, this body would be focused only on our community. Both are important, and I believe will help us serve everyone better over the long term."

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