July 29, 2021


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Twitter Accused of ‘Deliberately’ Defying Indian Government’s New Social Media Rules

Twitter Accused of ‘Deliberately’ Defying Indian Government’s New Social Media Rules

Twitter has “deliberately” defied and failed to comply with India’s new social media rules, according to the country’s technology minister Ravi Shankar Prasad. Reuters reports that the rules, which became effective in late May, make social media companies “more accountable to legal requests for swift removal of posts and sharing details on the originators of messages. The rules also require big social media companies to set up grievance redressal mechanisms and appoint new executives to coordinate with law enforcement.”

A senior government official told Reuters that Twitter may no longer be eligible to seek liability exemptions as an intermediary or the host of user content in India due to its failure to comply with new IT rules. “There are numerous queries arising as to whether Twitter is entitled to safe harbour provision,” Prasad tweeted. “However, the simple fact of the matter is that Twitter has failed to comply with the Intermediary Guidelines that came into effect from the 26th of May.”

Twitter, Prasad added, had chosen the “path of deliberate defiance when it comes to the Intermediary Guidelines.”

Twitter did not respond to a request for comment though it said on Monday it was keeping India’s technology ministry apprised of the steps it was taking. “An interim Chief Compliance Officer has been retained and details will be shared with the Ministry directly soon,” it said. “Twitter continues to make every effort to comply with the new guidelines.

New Delhi-based digital advocacy group Internet Freedom Foundation said it was only up to courts, and not the government, to decide whether companies such as Twitter remained intermediaries for alleged non-compliance such as appointment of executives.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.