Viral allegations about Center’s plan to ban social media apps are TRUMPED

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Checking the facts:

Both claims are misleading. They talk about the Indian government banning social media apps and time limits. One of the claims also talks about the popularity of the Meme chat app after the introduction of the new IT rules.

Claim 1: – The central government is considering banning Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

The claim is false. On February 25, 2021, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology drew up the new IT rules with the aim of protecting India’s sovereignty and integrity by regulating content shared on social media sites. . In a report from the Hindu, the central government demands that social media sites such as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube remove the posts within a specific timeframe, establish a grievance mechanism and help government agencies with investigations .

The Hindu’s report also said that, the Minister of Electronics and Informatics, Ravi Shankar Prasad, in a press release, said that the basic essence of the rules of information technology (guidelines for intermediaries and code of ethics for digital media), 2021 is a “soft touch monitoring mechanism” to deal with problems such as the persistent dissemination of false news, the abuse of these platforms to share transformed images of women and content related to vengeful pornography or to settle corporate rivalries. (Click here to see The Hindu’s new IT rules).

The Hindustan Times reported what the Minister of Electronics and Computing, Ravi Shankar Prasad, said in the press release.

A detailed version of the press meeting on the new IT rules by the press information office can be viewed here.

Therefore, failure to follow the guidelines would not result in an app ban, but social media companies would lose their status as an intermediary that offers them specific exemptions and immunity from liability for hosted third party information and data. by them. In short, they could be held accountable for the action.

The claim also talks about the Meme cat. It is true that Meme chat users and downloads have increased, but this is not due to the current scenario of IT guidelines.

a item was published by “entrepreneur.com“in January 2021 (ahead of the IT Minister’s press conference) on IT rules. He said the Meme Chat has received global investment and funding, which shows the Meme Chat App was important before even that computer rules are not formulated.However, it is true that the app does pay content creators for their memes.

Claim 2: Social media apps like Twitter and Facebook will no longer be able to function after May 26, 2021

The second social media claim mentions that Twitter and Facebook will not be able to operate in India from May 26. The claim is false. We noticed that both social networking sites were working even after May 26, 2021. However, according to the latest updates, we have seen that Facebook and Google have complied with the new IT rules. A report of the indian express says a Facebook spokesperson has accepted the new IT rules and said Facebook will follow the new set of guidelines.

The Indian Express report also mentions that Google has refined its methods and further we see that Google has also accepted the new set of IT rules. In a report by living mintGoogle CEO Sundar Pichai reiterated the company’s plans to comply with India’s new rules on intermediaries.

However, Twitter and WhatsApp are not yet complying with the new rules. The claim also said the deadline for complying with new legal rules for major social media platforms released by the government three months ago ended today. It’s true, the three-month deadline the government set for February 25, 2021 ends on May 26, 2021.

Conclusion: Therefore, both statements are partly true and partly false. Applications are not prohibited. However, failure to comply with the new IT rules may cause them to lose the status of intermediary which gives them exemptions and specific immunity from liability for the information and data of third parties hosted by them. In short, they could be held accountable for the action.


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