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After FB, Google & YouTube Say Will Aim to Comply With OTT Rules

The government’s new legal rules meant for social media platforms will come into effect from 26 May.

Published
Policy
2 min read
Tech giants Google and YouTube on Tuesday, 25 May, assured the Indian government of their intention to comply with the Centre’s new digital rules.
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Tech giants Google and YouTube on Tuesday, 25 May, assured the Indian government of their intention to comply with the Centre’s new digital rules. Their statements came after Facebook, earlier on Tuesday, also stated that it ‘aims to comply’ and will continue to discuss the issues with the government on the new IT rules.

The government’s rules, notified in the Gazette of India on 25 February under Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code Rules, 2021, will come into effect from 26 May.
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“We respect India's legislative process and have a long history of responding to government requests to remove content where the content violates the local law or our product policies. We have consistently invested in significant product changes, resources, and personnel to ensure that we're combating illegal content in an effective and fair way, and in order to comply with local laws in the jurisdictions that we operate in,” a Google spokesperson said on Tuesday.

The statement made by Google qualifies for all its platforms, including its online video service, YouTube.

“We realise that our work in keeping our platforms secure is never done and we will continue to refine our existing approaches, and evolve our policies and be as transparent as possible about how we make decisions.”
Google spokesperson

What Are the New Digital Rules?

In February, Union Ministers Prakash Javadekar and Ravi Shankar Prasad had announced drastic changes in the new legal rules for social media companies and a code of ethics for OTT streaming platforms as well as digital news media.

The new digital regulations mandate the appointment of officials such as a chief compliance officer, resident grievance officer, and a nodal contact person, as well as monitoring of objectionable content, complaint resolution, compliance report and removal of objectionable content.

Tech giant Facebook, which signalled that it would comply to the new regulations, suggested that it seeks to discuss certain particulars of its activity with the government.

“We aim to comply with the provisions of the IT rules and continue to discuss a few of the issues which need more engagement with the government.”
Facebook statement

“Pursuant to the IT Rules, we are working to implement operational processes and improve efficiencies. Facebook remains committed to people’s ability to freely and safely express themselves on our platform,” the statement added.

Meanwhile, Twitter, which has also not complied with the new rules yet, declined to comment, when contacted by The Quint.

IANS reported that apart from Koo, none of the top social media intermediaries have appointed a resident grievance officer, a chief compliance officer and a nodal contact person yet.

“If social media companies do not obey the rules, they may lose their status and protections as intermediaries and may become liable for criminal action as per the existing laws of India,” sources told IANS.

(With inputs from IANS.)

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