Online news and OTT platforms have been given 15 days by the Information and the Broadcasting ministry to provide details on compliance with the new digital media rules issued in February. Yesterday, social media platforms were asked for similar compliance reports and given 24 hours, despite their appeals pending in various courts.
In February, the Information Technology (Guidelines for Intermediaries and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021 had outlined for the first time how digital news organisations, social media platforms and OTT streaming services will be regulated by the government.
The law had brought the digital news media under the rules of the Press Council. New websites were required to get registered on the Information and Broadcasting Ministry site.
While notifying the rules, the government said it wanted to establish “soft touch progressive institutional mechanism with level-playing field” featuring a Code of Ethics and a three-tier grievance redressal framework for news sites and OTT platforms.
The rules included a strict oversight mechanism involving several ministries and a code of ethics that bans content affecting “the sovereignty and integrity of India” and that which threatens national security.