Saturday, July 17, 2010

2.5 mn Muslims threaten to leave Facebook

London: More than 2.5 million Muslims have threatened to quit Facebook after four Islamic pages were taken down, reports said Friday.
A template letter that has been pasted into numerous Facebook pages accuses founder Mark Zuckerberg and other senior members of Facebook of "ignoring the feelings of more than 2.5 million Muslims", the Daily Mail reported on its website.
The Muslim community is angry that four extremely popular Islamic pages including "I love Mohammed" and "Quran Lovers" were removed from the site and the letter warns that unless the pages are reinstated, Facebook's Muslim users will move to an Islamic alternative.
The letter also demands that new rules are introduced which make it a violation of Facebook's terms to post anti-Islamic comments.
Facebook has been given notice that unless the changes are introduced, 2.5 million Muslim users will leave to join, a social networking site for Muslims.
The letter reads: "Although you have attended the world's best communication skills courses you have been most successful in growing great hatred and hostility between you and Muslims around the world, but seriously this time you have caused an almost unrepairable damage."
It also accuses Facebook of "irresponsible behaviour" for allowing to host "Everybody Draw Mohammed Day" pages which sparked controversy for encouraging users to draw portraits of the Prophet.
There is no specific ban on images of Allah or the Prophet Mohammed in the Koran but there is one line which is commonly taken to mean that it is impossible for human hands to recreate his likeness. To attempt to do so would is an insult to Allah, it is believed.
The letter demands that the four deleted pages be reinstated, disrespecting Islamic religious symbols be banned and any Facebook page which does so be disabled., a social networking site set up specifically for the Muslim community, pledges to abide by the "highest Islamic principles" and encourages Muslim unity. Female users are asked not to use pictures of themselves as profile pictures.
According to Facebook the four Islamic pages were taken down because they were being used to spam users, which is against the company's policy.
The pages were using a JavaScript code that when entered in the address bar, would add all a user's friends to the page suggestions - making it similar to spamming people across Facebook.
A spokeswoman for Facebook said: "The pages in question were taken down because they violated our policies about spamming users. These pages were not removed because of content violations."
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