Online freedom of speech needs more regulation

YouTube is one of the top video sharing websites in the world. It has allowed millions to voice their opinions via video and share aspects of their cultures.
Recently, an anti-Islamic video was posted on the website, raising controversy about the issue of free speech online.
Following the posting, the U.S. Ambassador of Libya was assassinated, and three other Americans were killed.
The website restricted access in Egypt and Libya. Other countries blocked YouTube completely.
These incidents have caused debates about the issue of freedom of speech online.
People have the right to express their opinions and views on societal issues.
However, there should be a limit on how far a person goes with their expression.
When the Founding Fathers wrote the Bill of Rights, they included the amendment about freedom of speech so that people can have a voice, not cause violence and tension between countries.
YouTube should have better surveillance of the material that is being posted onto the website.
With this video being posted for millions to see without realizing what it was actually representing, people question the actual authority YouTube has over the material on its website.
According to the New York Times, YouTube decided to keep the video up because it did not meet the definition of hate speech.
The website is said to prohibit hate speech, which has grey areas within the definition itself.
In this new digital area, the loose arrangements of freedom of speech can cause a worldwide crisis.
There shouldn’t be extreme limitations on freedom of speech.
However, there should be a more defined definition of what is not acceptable.
Do we really want to cause more tension between countries?
In the Supreme Court case “Bradenburg v. Ohio,” it was ruled that the government couldn’t punish people for using inflammatory speech unless it will initiate “imminent lawless action.”
Even though the video did not explicitly do this, it did cause violence against the United States to break out.
This incident should cause the government to rethink the definitions that it has established and make them more distinct.
There is no distinct connection showing that the 
video posting caused the havoc in Libya and Egypt, but it is one of the main explanations that people are using.
YouTube should be more accountable for the content that is posted on its website.
All the company has to do is screen and analyze what is posted on its site to ensure that it is not going to cause millions to become offended.

Ivanna Tucker
Sports Editor
Ivanna can be reached at

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