Censorship Rules For Social Media, OTTs, Digital News Announced; Govt Will Remove Any Content If Rules Broken

Censorship Rules For Social Media, OTTs, Digital News Portal Announced; Govt Can Now Remove Any Content If Rules Broken
Censorship Rules For Social Media, OTTs, Digital News Portal Announced; Govt Can Now Remove Any Content If Rules Broken

New rules and regulations will now be implemented, according to which, digital news organizations and OTT platforms will have to follow the broad content guidelines meant for TV and print media.

Additionally, social media intermediaries will also be required to set up a grievance redressal mechanism to solve complaints from users.

Read on to find out what the rules and regulations state, right here!

Government Of India Issues Set Of Rules For TV, Print Media

The Government of India has issued a set of rules to follow the broad content guidelines that are meant for TV, print media, and social media intermediaries. 

As per reports, digital news websites will have to follow the programme code under the Cable Television Networks Regulation Act and Norms of Journalistic Conduct of the Press Council of India. This will also help guide the content put out in television and print media.

The platforms will have to implement access control mechanisms and will display the classification rating that os specific to each content or programme. They will also be required to implement a content descriptor that will inform the user about the nature of the content.

3-tier Grievance Redressal Mechanism To Be Implemented

As per the new rules, video streaming platforms and online news media will be required to set up a three-tier grievance redressal mechanism. Under this mechanism, self regulation will be required by publishers along with a self-regulating body headed by a retired Supreme Court or high court judge and an inter-ministerial committee. 

This body will be headed by a retired Supreme Court or high court judge and an inter-ministerial committee, which will be formed by the government. This body will be required to look at specific complaints and recommend action against the violation. This action could be in the form of a warning or a reprimand to the platforms or blocking or deleting any specific content.

The rules also state that the I&B secretary can also decide to block public access to a specific content. Also, the platform will not be given any opportunity of hearing in case of emergency.

Guidelines for Intermediaries 

Online intermediaries, including social media influencers, will be required to set up a grievance redressal mechanism that will resolve complaints from the users or victims. A ‘Grievance Officer’ will also be appointed to deal with complaints and share the name and contact details of such officers.

The officer will be required to acknowledge complaints within 24 hours and resolve it within 15 days from its receipt.

The rules will also be required to remove or disable access within 24 hours of receipt of complaints of content that exposes the private areas of individuals, including women, show such individuals in full or partial nudity or in sexual act or is in the nature of impersonation, including morphed images, etc. 

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