The center publishes draft regulations for regulating content on social media, OTT and other media platforms

The central government has finalized the draft rules to govern the content broadcast, displayed or distributed on social media brokers, OTT platforms, online news and other current affairs websites.

The rules have been summarized in the Information Technology Rules (Guidelines for Intermediaries and Code of Ethics for Digital Media) of 2021.

The rules consist of a code of ethics and a three-stage mechanism for regulating content. All of this was introduced under the 2000 Information Technology Act, which is two decades old.

All the rules would come into force when announced in the Official Journal.

The code of ethics would generally apply to the publishers of the online content. The publisher should exercise due caution when posting content on its platform and ensure that it does not jeopardize the sovereignty, integrity of India or endanger and endanger the security of the nation.

The code also contains the parameters that are used to issue a U or A certificate to the content. In addition, the ministry has set up a complaint portal through which the general public can address and resolve their problems.

Under the three-tier framework for resolving complaints, complaints would be addressed by three bodies. firstly by the institution itself, secondly by the self-regulating bodies of the competent authorities and thirdly by the central government.

In addition, an interdepartmental committee would be set up with members from various ministries such as defense, foreign affairs, law and justice, etc.

The intermediaries would also be obliged to carry out due diligence and to set up the necessary bodies for this.

Overall, the guidelines have been developed taking public complaints into account. Numerous petitions had been filed in the Apex Court and High Courts asking the Center to formulate rules that could regulate the content of the curators for online content.

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