Economy News

Centre announced release of new guidelines for social media regulation

On February 25, the centre released guidelines for regulating social media and OTT platforms to curb misuse of content.

Union ministers Ravi Shankar Prasad and Prakash Javadekar welcomed social media platforms to do business in India.

Moreover, they lauded the platforms for garnering good number of users and empowering ordinary Indian citizens.

The government aims to establish a speedy grievance redressal mechanism to regulate the actions of Indian social media agencies.

These are the following highlights from the briefing:

  • Establishment of a three-level grievance redressal mechanism under the rules with two levels of self-regulation:
  1. Level I consist of the publisher.
  2. Next, Level II comprises the self regulatory body.
  3. Level III includes the oversight mechanism under the ministry of information and broadcasting.
  • All social media platforms need to have two categories of intermediaries.
  • The Centre will notify users number for a significant social media intermediary soon.
  • Significant social media firms must hire a chief compliance officer.
  • The firms must have a nodal contact person who can be in touch with law enforcement agencies 24/7.
  • OTT platforms like Netflix, Amazon Prime must classify all content suitable for viewing by age – U, U/A(above 7), U/A (13+), U/A (16+) and A.
  • All social media platforms will have a provision for voluntary verification mechanism of the users.
  • The platforms seeking to disable access to the content of any social media user must give reasons.
  • Social media firms should not host or store, and must take down content prohibited by law.

This is in the context of India’s sovereignty, integrity, defamation and incitement to offence.

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