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Government notifies amendments to IT Rules, tightens social media regulations.

Government notifies amendments to IT Rules, tightens social media regulations.

Government notifies amendments to IT Rules, tightens social media regulations.
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By Vijay Anand  Oct 28, 2022 8:45:01 PM IST (Updated)

Under the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Amendment Rules, 2022, those aggrieved by the decisions of social media companies can approach with a Grievance Appellate Committee to be set up by the Centre. Further, the notification said the GAC's decisions will be binding on the social media companies.

The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology on Friday issued a notification amending the IT Rules. In the notification, the ministry said a three-member Grievance Appellate Committees (GACs) will be set up by the Centre.

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Under the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Amendment Rules, 2022, those aggrieved by the decisions of Grievance Officer of social media companies may appeal against the decision with a GAC. Further, the notification said the GAC's decisions will be binding on the social media companies. Further, the amended rules provide for an online dispute resolution mechanism.
Under the amended IT rules, a social media company, referred to as an intermediary, must ensure that users do not post or share any information that does not belong to them.
The IT rules also put the onus on the intermediary to ensure content posted on its platform is not obscene, pornographic, paedophilic, invasive of another's privacy, hate speech, promoting illegal activities or threatening "the unity, integrity, defence, security or sovereignty of India".
Intermediaries are now required to at least once a year inform their users of these rules, regulations and privacy policy. Further, in case of a complaint against a post that violates rules, the intermediaries must acknowledge the report within 24 hours, resolve it in 15 days, and if the complaint contains a request to remove the post, do so within 72 hours.
Anyone who is not satisfied with their complaint's resolution can approach a GAC within 30 days. The GAC will "make an endeavour" to resolve the appeal in 30 calendar days.
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