Days after the Narendra Modi government notified IT rules for social media intermediaries and digital media platforms, global players such as Facebook and Twitter, as well as domestic platforms such as ShareChat came together to discuss the implications of the new rules on Tuesday, and an extension to comply with the rules was among the issues discussed.
The meeting was held by industry body Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI), which is looking to collate comments and concerns from the industry and is expected to put this forth to the government in the coming days, sources told CNBC-TV18.
While social media platforms with more than 50 lakh users have three months to comply with the new norms, sources said companies are looking for more time, especially since they have to put in place a compliance officer, a nodal contact person for 24/7 coordination with law enforcement agencies, and a resident grievance officer.
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Industry members said the companies will also need more time to streamline grievance redressal mechanisms, as the new rules mandate a unique ticket number for every complaint received by an intermediary, among other processes.
Many players will also have to update their AI tools, as the rules require that social media intermediaries should endeavour to deploy automated tools to identify content depicting rape, child sexual abuse etc.
The companies are also seeking clarifications on a host of issues in the new rules, especially around the liability on the compliance officer, issues around breaking end-trend encryption on social messaging platforms such as WhatsApp and Signal, and the processes to provide users a mechanism for verification of their accounts.
IAMAI, and the companies did not comment on CNBC-TV18 queries.
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However, in a statement on February 25, IAMAI had welcomed the rules citing faster consumer grievance resolution.
"IAMAI has welcomed the much awaited Intermediary Guidelines 2021. The guidelines, focused primarily on consumer complaint, will help consumers of online curated content, social media users and online news and current affairs resolve their complaints in a process oriented manner," Subho Ray, IAMAI president, said.