Friends! Something highly peculiar happened today. Twitter denied access to my account for almost an hour on the alleged ground that there was a violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of the USA and subsequently they allowed me to access the account. pic.twitter.com/WspPmor9Su— Ravi Shankar Prasad (@rsprasad) June 25, 2021
Union Electronics and Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad on Friday that microblogging site Twitter denied him access to his account for almost an hour over violation of US laws.
“Twitter denied access to my account for almost an hour on the alleged ground that there was a violation of the Digital Millennium Copyright Act of the USA and subsequently they allowed me to access the account,” Prasad wrote on the microblogging site.
The minister said that social media’s actions were in gross violation of Rule 4(8) of the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules 2021 where they failed to provide him any prior notice before denying me access to my own account.
Prasad also took a dig at the site over its non-compliance with the new digital rules in India that came into force last month. “It is apparent that my statements calling out the high handedness and arbitrary actions of Twitter, particularly sharing the clips of my interviews to TV channels and its powerful impact, have clearly ruffled its feathers,” the minister tweeted.
He added that it is now apparent why Twitter is refusing to comply with the new guidelines because if the microblogging site does comply, it would be unable to arbitrarily deny access to an individual’s account which does not suit their agenda.
According to Prasad, in the past several years, no television channel or any anchor has made any complaints about copyright infringements with regard to any of the news clips of his interviews shared on social media.
The move by Twitter, he said, indicates that they are “not the harbinger of free speech that they claim to be”. He added that the platform is interested in running their own agenda, with the threat that if one does not toe the line they draw, they will arbitrarily remove you from their platform.
Amid the rift between the Centre and microblogging site over the new digital rules, Prasad made it clear, “No matter what any platform does they will have to abide by the new IT Rules fully and there shall be no compromise on that.”