MXit goes to war

2010-03-26 13:10
Cape Town - Popular cellphone messaging service MXit has declared war on porn and cyber criminals.

The service has announced that anyone posting offensive or explicit material in public areas will be banned without warning.

"For too long, a group of less than 0.1% of our user base has tarnished our reputation with their continual abuse of our community through unsavoury, and sometimes criminal, behaviour," said CEO Herman Heunis.

He said that offensive content would be judged based on complaints by users and those who post content in public areas would be banned, but he denied that MXit was engaging in censorship.

Not censorship

"We made it crystal clear in the press release that we have no intention of censoring what happens with regard to person-to-person communication as it is every person's constitutional right to send whatever he/she wants to his/her friend.

"But when that posting goes to a public place within MXit, it transgresses our terms and conditions which the users agreed to when they registered on MXit," he told News24.

Heunis said that they did not anticipate a drop in subscriber numbers, and that suspicious activity would be reported to the South African Police Service.

"I will not be surprised if we gain more users especially when we begin our new educational drive. No specific crimes are targeted - we will simply report suspicious behaviour to the Cyber crime Unit of the Saps and they investigate further," he said.

Banned users


He added that banned users could appeal the decision, "but the chance of re-instatement is about zero", and hinted that users are being monitored.

"What I can say is that people who think they can get away with criminal behaviour by using the internet are living with a false sense of security.  Everything you do on the internet leaves a trace somewhere."


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