Facebook mistakenly blocks Indian accounts with c*** in it

This once again proves how difficult it’s to regulate the web.

Facebook, equipped with the knowledge that, the word c*** or c*****a or c******a in India is a Hindi expletive (slang or Gali); day before yesterday blocked “thousands” of accounts in India for using the word “chutia”.

Amongst accounts blocked for this reason, is the Facebook Page of a community in the Indian state of Assam. Named, All Assam Chutia Students ’ Union (AACSU), the Facebook community not only criticized Facebook for blocking its page; but also of “thousands” of accounts belonging to Chutia community.

The word means many things in India and Pakistan:

Although, Facebook likely believes the accounts are fake or just spam, but AACSU argues it’s all a big misunderstanding. The student organization burned a Facebook effigy in the five upper Assam districts of Tinsukia, Dibrugarh, Sivasagar, Jorhat, and Golaghat on Monday and demanded public apology from the social networking giant.

AACSu’s disappointment is understandable, as there indeed is a Chutia community in Assam who speaks Assamese, Bengal, and Bodo.The community is an ethnic tribe of Assam which has a rich historical background in the state history; and like it or not, it is pronounced the same way once pronounces the Hindi slang. That’s why among the thousands of accounts blocked by Facebook are the accounts of some prominent personalities and popular artists like Krishnamoni Chutia, who belong to the community.

In the Bihar state of India, there is a place known ‘Chutiya’, having its own State Bank of India branch; but the name of this place is not pronounced like the Hindi slang, roughly meaning to “c***” in English (referring to someone as a “douchebag” or “moron” or “f***er”). Instead, the name of this place is pronounced like Chutiya in Hindi which means ‘hair braided’.

Just Google search the word and you will find a place in Pakistan, named the same.

It’s not clear how all the accounts in question were blocked, but this once again proves that censoring or regulating web is a big ask; especially when there are thousands of least heard communities and languages in the world.

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