Home / News / India /  'Making every effort to comply, will share details within a week': Twitter on India's new digital rules

Social media platform Twitter on Wednesday wrote to the Central Government saying it "remains deeply committed to India" and "serving vital public conversation" taking place on the service.

The micro-blogging site is "making every effort" to comply with the new digital rules. "We have assured Govt of India that Twitter is making every effort to comply with new guidelines," the social media giant said in its letter.

Twitter had appointed India-based officers on contract it is required to amid difficulties due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.

The site said that it has appointed nodal and a resident grievance officer on contract and is "in the advanced stages of finalizing" a Chief Compliance Officer.

"We understand the importance of these regulations and have endeavored in good faith to comply with the guidelines, including with respect to hiring personnel in India. The guidelines were notified on February 25 and the global impact of the pandemic has made it more difficult for us as a practical matter to make certain arrangements necessary to comply with the Guidelines within the stipulated time-frame," the letter read.

Twitter also said that they are planning to provide additional details to the Centre in the next several days, and at the latest within a week.

What the new IT rules say

The new digital rules for social media firms that came into effect in May mandate large platforms like Facebook and Twitter to undertake greater due diligence and make these digital platforms more accountable and responsible for the content hosted by them.

The new IT rules also require significant social media intermediaries -- providing services primarily in the nature of messaging -- to enable identification of the "first originator" of the information that undermines the sovereignty of India, the security of the state, or public order.

It say that significant social media intermediaries, those with more than 50 lakh users, are required to appoint a grievance officer, a nodal officer and a chief compliance officer. These personnel have to be residents in India.

Social media firms will also have to take down flagged content within 36 hours, and remove within 24 hours content that is flagged for issues such as nudity and pornography.

Non-compliance with the new guidelines would result in these platforms losing their intermediary status that provides them immunity from liabilities over any third-party data hosted by them.

The Centre believes that the new rules are designed to prevent abuse and misuse of platforms, and offer users a robust forum for grievance redressal.

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