The Government of India has notified new rules for digital news publishers and over-the-top (OTT) platforms. With this, the government aims to bring online news media publishers under the same norms as the traditional media publishers, such as newspapers and news channels. These new rules will apply on social media players such as Twitter, Facebook, WhatsApp and OTT players like Zee5, Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hotstar, among others.
“The Government of India has notified the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021 on 25.02.2021. Part III of Rules pertains to digital news publishers and publishers of online curated content (OTT platforms). The rules require the publishers to adhere to the Code of Ethics, establish a Grievance redressal Mechanism, and furnish information to the Government of India,” said the Ministry of Information & Broadcasting.
Earlier in a press conference, Ravi Shankar Prasad, Law & Justice, Communications, Electronics & Information Technology Minister and Prakash Javadekar, Minister of Environment, Forest & Climate Change, Information & Broadcasting had confirmed about the Digital Media Ethics Code.
The document mentions section 87 of the Information Technology Act, 2000 that offers the government powers to make such rules.
Digital media will cover digitized content that can be transmitted over the internet or computer networks. It includes intermediaries such as Twitter and Facebook, and publishers of news and current affairs content. This as defined in a document that lays out the government’s framework to regulate online content.
As per the guidelines under Information Technology (Guidelines for intermediaries and digital media ethics code) Rules, 2021, digital news media publishers will now need to follow rules that apply to print and electronic media. Zeebiz