If Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram do not comply with the new Intermediary Guidelines, they will face a ban in India.
The deadline for accepting the government's guidelines is May 25, but none of the sites, including WhatsApp, Facebook, and Twitter, have yet to comply with the new rules. The only social media app that has complied with the new guidelines before the May 25 deadline is Koo, the Indian version of Twitter.
The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MEITy) gave social media sites three months to comply with the new IT rules in February 2021.
It is a critical time for social media firms because if they do not comply with the new rules by May 25, they will lose their intermediary status and rights, and criminal action may be taken against them under Indian law, according to a government official. The companies based in the United States had requested a six-month extension because they were awaiting a response from the US headquarters.
“We plan to comply with the requirements of the IT rules and continue to address a few of the issues that need further interaction with the government,” a company spokesperson said in a statement, revealing whether Facebook will follow the rules or not. We are working to incorporate operating processes and boost efficiencies in accordance with the IT laws. Facebook is dedicated to people's right to express themselves openly and anonymously on our platform.”
According to the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology's new regulations, social media sites must nominate enforcement officers from India. The officer will review the complaints, keep an eye on the material, and delete it if it is offensive. Such guidelines apply not only to social media sites, but also to over-the-top (OTT) platforms.
Netflix, Amazon Prime, and other streaming services will be required to appoint a grievance redressal officer based in India who will handle complaints and respond within 15 days. According to the government, social media sites do not have a self-regulatory code. As a result, it wants the companies to form a committee with representatives from various ministries to control the material.
The new rules also state that the committee would have exclusive authority to investigate allegations of code violations.