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Failing To Comply With Government's Rules Within Deadline

By FnF Correspondent | PUBLISHED: 25, May 2021, 10:12 am IST | UPDATED: 25, May 2021, 10:12 am IST

Failing To Comply With Government's Rules Within Deadline

New Delhi: The deadline to comply with the government's new legal rules for big social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter will come to an end on Tuesday, these rules were issued three months ago. 

The government's rules will come into effect from May 26.

According to official sources quoted by IANS, social media platforms such as Twitter, Facebook were given three months to comply by the new government rules which were notified on February 25th under Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code Rules, 2021. Except Koo, none of the top social media intermediaries have appointed a resident grievance officer, a chief compliance officer and a nodal contact person yet.

Likely to lose protection 

These social media platforms are likely to lose their protections as intermediaries a top official revealed on Monday. 

"If social media companies do not obey the rules, they may lose their status and protections as intermediaries and may become liable for criminal action as per the existing laws of India," top official told IANS.

The past three months have also been turbulent for these social media platforms. Most recently, the Delhi Police Special Cell on Monday reached the offices of Twitter India in Delhi's Lado Sarai and Gurugram to "serve notice" in the alleged Congress 'Toolkit' case wherein certain tweets by BJP leaders were flagged as having "manipulated media".

According to IANS, the social media platforms which were required to furnish monthly reports as to how many grievances were filed and settled, have failed to do so. Some of the platforms have sought more time of up to six months for furnishing compliance.

The new rules for social media

Under the new rules, the social media platforms require to appoint a Chief Compliance Officer, a Nodal Contact Person and a Resident Grievance Officer, giving their name and contact address in India, complaint resolution, monitoring of objectionable content, compliance report and removal of objectionable content. The grievance officer must acknowledge the complaint within 24 hours and dispose it of within 15 days and provide reasons to the complainant for any action/inaction.

According to media reports, the oversight mechanism will include a committee with representatives from ministries of Defence, External Affairs, Home, I&B, Law, IT and Women and Child Development. It will gets suo motu power to call hearings on complaints of violation.

The government will also designate an officer who can direct blocking of content if an appellate body finds that the content violates the law, it is empowered to send the content to a government-controlled committee for blocking orders to be issued.

The standard reply by some platforms has been that they will await instructions from their company headquarters in the US said the IANS report, who in turn on their own will have an expert assessment to take a view.

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