Is it ethical to upload molestation video with victim identity ?

The previous week has been quite eventful for North East India ( Assam in particular) and Guwahati trended in Twitter for wrong reason. Guwahati Molestation case had become national outrage in both social media as well as mainstream media. Many debates raged in newsroom and well as internet space, and we at North East India Blog had also did a poll on the same topic.

The question we put up was ( the poll is still on) “Do you think that it is justified to upload the mob-molestation video of the victim girl disclosing her identity that multiplies her misery for the rest of her life ?”

We gave three options to answer by visitors, a. No b. Yes c. Don’t know. 85% voted No while 15% voted yes. Interestingly, no one voted for ‘Don’t know”! So we assume everybody had a clear opinion on the issue!

We have received 52 votes so far from all over India though maximum voters are from Guwahati and other areas of North East India. Some votes were cast from cities like Mumbai, Delhi, Chennai, Hyderabad and Kolkata too.

The result and trend of the voting is very encouraging. We at North East Blog maintain position that it is not ethical to upload women molestation video with their identity discolsed either by showing face and name in audio. Also any revealing information which is indicative of the victims name, address, ethnicity etc.

The poll was direct result of Guwahati Molestation incident where NewsLive TV had uploaded the video footage with victim’s name in audio ( though it is established later that, the name was a phony). CM of Assam, Mr. Tarun Gogoi had also condemned the uploading as unethical journalism. The incident has cost the job of Atanu Bhuyan his Editor In Chief. Also NCW member Alka Lamaba was removed following her revelation of victims name in a press conference.

We think, once a woman is molested, the society could at least help her by protecting her identity so that she may start back his life again with some dignity.

One thought on “Is it ethical to upload molestation video with victim identity ?

  • July 21, 2012 at 4:33 pm

    Notwithstanding the benefits of having such a poll, we must however attempt to answer some deeper questions. The event having already occurred, a key area of inquiry must be- what are the legal remedies in place for the victim and how can the victim avail them?

    The enthusiasm of the media to create sensational news is evident in this incident, leading the victim loss of reputation. Our Constitution guarantees freedom of speech and expression subject to reasonable restrictions, which the media keep overlooking.

    However in this case the victim can file a criminal defamation case under Section 499 of the Indian Penal Code. Though the media person’s involved have been removed from their office’s, the victim still has an option of exhausting her legal remedies and it is an urgent need of the hour to bring unethical media to the courts.


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