Assam Current affairs 2021 : In todays daily Assam Current affairs season we will discuss about the facebook & twitter Vs Indian government.
What has happened?
• The government will seek reports from social media platforms such as Facebook, Instagram and Twitter to check if they have complied with the new Intermediary Guidelines, according to government sources.
• The deadline to meet these guidelines, which includes creating systems to deal with grievances by users and monitoring harmful content, ends on May 25 and failure to comply will be dealt strictly, they said.
• Should the companies fail to comply over the next two days, they could lose protection accorded to them under section 79 of the Information Technology Act, sources said.
Why it is important for social media?
• The Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code Rules), 2021 was notified on February 25.
• The large social media companies, which are classified by the government as ‘intermediaries’, had three months to comply with the new rules.
• These rules come into effect on May 26, 2021, and if social media companies do not obey
• They may lose their status and protections as intermediaries and may become liable for criminal action based on the laws of the land, said one person familiar with the matter.
New IT rules
• The new rules insisted on these platforms appointing a resident grievance officer, chief compliance officer and a nodal contact person.
• They also mandated major social media intermediaries (with over 50 lakh users) to have a physical contact address in India published on its website or mobile application or both.
• Swift grievance redressal mechanism within 15 days, and active monitoring of harmful content using automated tools, and removal/disabling access to disturbing content were also part of the mandate.
• They were also required to publish a monthly compliance report on the same on a monthly basis.
• “The point to note is that why appointment of three persons namely Resident Grievance Officer, the Chief Compliance Officer and Nodal Contact Person should take more than three months?
• People who are victims of social media have suffered because of the abuse practically because they do not know whom to approach in social media in absence of any public information,” another person cited above said.
• “Some of these platforms sought more time up to six months for furnishing compliance,” this person added.
• There has been criticism too, especially with respect to breaking encryption for messaging services like WhatsApp.
• “A significant social media intermediary providing services primarily in the nature of messaging shall enable the identification of the first originator of the information…as may be required by a judicial order passed by a court of competent jurisdiction…” the rule reads.
• This would mean that the likes of WhatsApp, Signal and Telegram will have to make provisions to comply with the new rules and for some,
• That would mean compromising the end-to-end (E2E) encryption, and also concerns around privacy.
• Without the implementation of the personal data protection bill, experts had said that there will be no checks and balances.
• While the rules have addressed key issues, there is no denying that they give the government more control over how they use the data of citizens without policy safeguards, they added.
• As of February 2021,India had 530 million WhatsApp users, 448 million YouTube users, 410 million Facebook users, 210 million Instagram users, and 5 million Twitter users, According to latest data from the IT Ministry.
• Personal Data Protection Bill, 2019 divides the data into 3 categories- Personal data, Sensitive Personal Data, Critical Personal Data.