Facebook plea to drop suit denied

In a setback for Facebook, a Delhi court on Wednesday dismissed its plea for dropping its name from a suit seeking action against several websites for allegedly hosting objectionable content.

Administrative civil judge Parveen Singh dismissed the contention of Facebook India Ltd, which told the court it was only the India chapter of Facebook Inc, and had no role in running the website facebook.com as its Internet servers are located in the US.

The matter is likely to be heard again in court on June 4. “At this stage, it cannot be said Facebook India has no say in running the website. There might be a probability Facebook India provides technical support, programming and developing of the website, and tests new software for the same, and thus can have some say in how this website runs in India,” the court said.

“It also might be possible Facebook India is raising revenue for facebook.com by seeking advertisers from India for facebook.com,” the court said, adding that the company’s name cannot be deleted at this stage.

Facebook India argued it is not responsible for content appearing on facebook.com, and that it doesn’t
control or operate the servers hosting the website, located in the US.

On Facebook India’s argument that it is a mere software developer and has nothing to do with website content, the court said the company’s counsel had failed to explain the relationship between Facebook India and Facebook Inc, which runs the website facebook.com.

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