On 6-7-2022, Ministry of Electronics & Information Technology published draft amendment rules to amend the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021. These amendments aim to direct the intermediaries of social media to further limit and instruct the users to abide by the rules and regulations, privacy policy and user agreement for accessor usage of its computer resource by any person and on failure the account of users can be removed and suspended. These issues can be resolved by appealing to the Grievance Appellate Committee.

Key Amendments:

  • Rule 3(1) b (a-x), states that the social media intermediaries must comply with the rules and due diligence must be observed. Intermediaries must direct the users to not host, display, upload, modify, publish, transmit, store, update or share any information that violates the rights and integrity of people.
  • Part II of the Rules are amended to achieve the proper diligence and mechanism for redressal. Under Rule 3(1) user shall ensure proper compliance while Intermediaries are required to take reasonable measures to ensure accessibility of its services to users along with reasonable expectation of due diligence, privacy and transparency and respect the rights of the citizens under sub clauses (m) and (n).
  • Draft rules further elaborate these restrictions on the users by removing/deleting/suspending their accounts on such social media platforms.
  • “Grievance Appellate Committee” introduced:

    1. “Grievance Appellate Committee”, inserted, which is defined under Rule 2 (l).
    2. By Rule 3(3) Central government will constitute Grievance Appellate where any aggrieved person can file an appeal having jurisdiction in the matter within a period of 30 days of receipt of communication from the Grievance Officer.
    3. The appeal must be disposed within 30 days and the order of the same must be complied with by the concerned Intermediary.

*Shubhi Srivastava, Editorial Assistant has reported this brief.

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