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Govt. Amends IT Rules, Panels In 3 Months To Hear Social Media User Complaints
The Centre tweaks Information Technology Rules, On Friday This would aid in settling user issues against the way social media platforms regarding content and other matters, initially.
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To make way for the setting up of grievance appellate panels, on Friday, the Centre tweaked Information Technology Rules. This would aid in settling user issues against the way social media platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Instagram addressed their complaints regarding content and other matters, initially.
The notification stated, "The central government shall, by notification, establish one or more grievance appellate committees within three months from the date of commencement of the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Amendment Rules, 2022.”
Every grievance appellate committee will consist of a chairperson and two whole-time members appointed by the central government. Of these, one would be a member ex-officio and two would be independent members.
The notification added, "Any person aggrieved by a decision of the grievance officer may prefer an appeal to the grievance appellate committee within a period of thirty days from the date of receipt of communication from the grievance officer.”
The panel will take up these appeals "expeditiously" and try resolving it within thirty calendar days from the date of receipt of the appeal. If it deems fit, it will seek assistance from people having requisite qualification, experience and expertise in the subject matter.
The notification emphasised, "The grievance appellate committee shall adopt an online dispute resolution mechanism wherein the entire appeal process, from filing of appeal to the decision thereof, shall be conducted through digital mode.”
Rajeev Chandrasekhar, minister of state for electronics and information technology, stated, "Our rules and laws for intermediaries remain the same regardless of who owns the platforms. So, the expectation of compliance with Indian laws and rules remains."
The social media platforms are already required to have an in-house grievance redress officer. They are also needed to designate executives to co-ordinate with law enforcement officials.
One of the amended rules, coming into effect from October 28, is that a government panel shall be formed to hear complaints from users about content moderation decisions of social media platforms. These rules make it compulsory for social media platforms to comply with India's sovereign laws.
The firms would also be required to acknowledge user complaints within 24 hours and resolve them within 15 days or 72 hours in case of an information takedown request.