- Recently, on 25th May the new IT(Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021, came into effect by Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology. On February 25 they had given the social media platforms three months to comply with the new rules.
- These rules are applicable for social media and OTT platforms and digital media.
- The platforms are yet to comply with the new set of guidelines which also mandates the establishment of a three-tier grievance redressal mechanism.
- However, none of the platforms including Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp has compiled with the new law as of now.
- InFact, social media giant Facebook has issued statement saying that they are working to comply with the new set of guidelines and also wants to hold talks with the government regarding certain provisions of the rules.
- Google saying that it is willing to work in tandem with the Indian government regarding the applications of the new IT rules 2021.
- The entire fiasco has raised a lot of questions about whether the Indian government will get rid of the social media apps if they don’t accept the new rules or not.
- Netflix has complied with the new intermediary guidelines, the other companies are yet to submit their agreement.
- The reason why the companies are taking longer to accept the new rules is that it gives the government a lot of power to regulate companies dealing in information and content within India.
Instructions of the new IT rule-2021
- All social media platforms that have more than 50 lakh users will have to follow the guidelines issued under the new IT rules, 2021.
- All digital media platforms with more than 50 lakh users will be required to have a grievance redressal mechanism and to appoint Chief Compliance Officer, Resident Grievance Officer and a Nodal Contact Person so that the grievance of the users can be addressed properly.
- OTT platforms will also have to establish grievance redressal mechanisms and the contents published on the platforms will have to be classified according to the age of the user.
- The complaints received will have to be addressed within 15 days from the date on which the complaint has been received.
- Any flagged contents made by an authority will have to be taken down within 36 hours.
Any companies not complying with such rules will be doled out punishments under the Indian Penal Code(IPC).
Issues regarding new IT rules-2021
- The government had not only set the rules for Facebook, Twitter and WhatsApp and other social media apps but also for the OTT platforms.
- WhatsApp has filed a lawsuit against the government seeking a ban on regulations coming into force.