Originally Posted by nautilus_project
The recent arrest of Fabio Jose Silva Coelho, head of operations for Google Brazil, is not the first Google employee to be arrested and presumabley 'held accountable' for videos posted on YouTube.
I'm interested to hear other peoples thoughts on if this is necessary and if some things should be removed or if freedom of speech should prevail? I am especially interested to hear from those in countries other than my own (Canada) on the matter, just to have a little more wordly prespective on the issue.
I'm an American with, I am learning, somewhat different opinions about free speech than some of my compatriots.
Reading into the article, it's stated that Google/YouTube has the ability to restrict access to Google/YouTube content within certain regions/jurisdictions. The recent anti-Muslim video is cited as an example.
It seems fairly clear that if a national authority like Brazil's court orders Google to restrict access to content, they should do so for the jurisdiction in question. It isn't for Google to decide what is right and lawful around the world, but for the citizenry (as represented by the government) and those people's body of law to decide that.
However, I would maintain that such materials should not be restricted in other nations/jurisdictions unless the content is an infringement of international law.
A close friend of mine was one of the sound engineers employed by Real Audio in the 90's, and one of the things he worked on was assisting people located in the Balkan states in broadcasting through Real Audio to the world when their governments locked down more traditional means of reporting. There are many ways in which the internet protects people as global citizens, and I do think that ability should be protected and fought for.
But no, Google doesn't have the right and certainly doesn't have the responsibility to ignore or undermine the order of a court within a nation. One could fairly argue that the onus for blocking/restricting the content in question is on the nation itself, but if Google/YouTube possesses those controls and wishes to have a business presence in the region in question, I should think it is beholden to follow that region's laws, at least locally.
This does put a strain on global businesses, who will need to have legal divisions for every entity that possesses a legal identity. Any company with a physical presence in a nation will already have access to local legal counsel, though, so it should be a manageable strain.
What is your (Canadian) perspective, n_p?