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01/04/2001 09:55 AM ID: 2439 Permalink   

Banning Hate Auctions Sounds Good - But Will It Work?


Under heavy criticism for allowing so-called hate auctions, Yahoo! has announced that it will no longer allow the sale of Nazi or KKK items on its auction site. However, enforcing the ban could prove difficult.

Yahoo! said that it will use software to filter objectionable items. But how will software be able to differentiate between hate items, and allowed items such as books about Nazis in the World War? "Look, it is not foolproof," said Yahoo's producer.

Relying on keyword searches means that it is simple to disguise an illegal auction, by misspelling. Yahoo will use humans to pick up on what the software misses, but to find all illegal auctions among the all the legitimate ones is nearly impossible.

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