Abused on Facebook, 8 Women From Kerala

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Thiruvananthapuram Going against the majority opinion has as much consequences in the virtual world as in the real. Eight women from Kerala, who found this to their cost, have now joined hands – their campaign is called For a Better FB — and no less than 75 international online organisations are supporting their demands.

It is not just the abuse and victimisation by other users that they had to face, say the women.

I was the one who was abused but it was my ID that Facebook blocked thrice, said  Preetha G, 41, a single mother from a remote village. When I reported the abusive comments to Facebook in Malayalam, I got a response that said it does not violate our community standards, she said.

 Jaseela CV faced a similar situation. When she supported a man who got arrested for not standing up during the national anthem at a cinema hall, a torrent of abuse started, she said.

I was abused, my profile was reported and I was shocked when Facebook sent me a message saying I was using a fake name, when actually I was using my real name, she said.

Now their demands put forward to Facebook includes getting rid of the real name policy and the need to provide government identification for verification; dedicated personnel to assess hate pages; linguistic experts who can understand the complexity of the non-English cultures.

But Facebook, which has a system of closely working with several regional organisations across the world, maintains that it is their real name policy that bars people who habitually harass users and commit other irregularities.

We take any violations of our standards seriously, and that is why we remove content, profiles and pages when we are made aware of it, A Facebook spokesperson told We know that we may not always get it right, given the lack of context we often have and the sheer volume of reports we receive, but we do have real people reviewing these reports in local languages and making the best decisions possible with the information before them.

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