Published On : Thu, Feb 25th, 2021

Govt frames rules for digital media, OTT platforms

Law and IT minister Ravi Shankar Prasad enunciates social media, digital media and OTT guidelines:

“Social media platforms upon being asked either by a court order or a govt authority will be required to disclose the first originator of mischievous tweet or message as the case may be.

“This should be only in relation to sovereignty and integrity of India, the security of the state, public order, relations with foreign states, or rape, sexually explicit content etc.

“Concerns raised over the years about rampant abuse of social media… Ministry had widespread consultations and we prepared a draft in Dec 2018 – there’ll be 2 categories, Intermediary which can be social media intermediary & significant social media intermediary.

“We shall notify users number for a significant social media intermediary very soon. They will have to have a grievance redressal mechanism, you will also have to name a grievance officer who shall register the grievance within 24 hours and disposal in 15 days.

“If there are complaints against dignity of users, particularly women – expose private parts of individuals or nudity or sexual act or impersonation etc – you’ll be required to remove that within 24 hrs after complaint made. This is designed to respect dignity of women.”

Union Minister Prakash Javadekar adds: We have decided to have a 3-tier mechanism for OTT platforms. OTT and digital news media will have to disclose their details. We are not mandating registration, we are seeking information.

“The Digital Media platforms have no monitoring mechanism like TV News Media or the print media. Which is why the govt felt that there must be a level playing field. There were 50 questions on the OTT platforms in Parliament.”