Major social media applications, including Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, along with a video platform YouTube, might be banned in India if they fail to comply with the new intermediary rules of the government.
The new rules came into place in February and said that any social media platform that has more than 50 lakh registered users in India will need to appoint at least three officers for grievances redressal. Further, the platforms were asked to follow a specific code of conduct that was criticised heavily by the users for violating the terms of free speech.
YouTube, Facebook, Instagram and Twitter Yet to Comply With the Rules
None of the platforms mentioned above has complied with the rules announced by the government yet. As per a report from Gadgets360, Facebook is currently in talks with the government over some of the issues related to the matter.
The Facebook spokesperson said that the company is completely ready and comfortable to comply with the IT rules announced by the government. It is just that the company is currently in discussion with the government, which needs more engagement since the issues are not resolved yet. The spokesperson further said that Facebook is committed to allowing people to freely share their views and thoughts on the platform without worrying about anything.
The new IT Rules 2021 direct the social media platforms to appoint three officers for grievance redressal. The first officer (specific chief officer) to ensure that the platforms are in compliance with the Information Technology Act 2000; second is a nodal officer that is available round the clock for communicating with the law-enforcement agencies; and the third officer to acknowledge all the grievances submitted under 24 hours and respond to them within 15 days.
It was mandatory for these foreign companies to assign officers from India itself. Further, the companies had to show a physical contact address for their business in India along with the contact details of the officers hired on their apps and website.
One of the rules has also asked the platforms to track the originator of a message for enabling identification if necessary. However, this rule isn’t appreciated by the Internet Freedom Foundation (IFF) since it leads to the invasion of privacy for the users of the platform.