“Need more engagement with govt,” Facebook on social media guidelines

As new guidelines notified in February this year by the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology for social media platforms except Koo will come into force on Wednesday, Facebook expressed reluctance to comply with its implementation in absolute terms.

In a communication to the query of the reporter, Facebook said it is continuing discussion on certain issues with the government.

“We aim to comply with the provisions of the IT rules and continue to discuss a few of the issues which need more engagement with the government,” a Facebook spokesperson told Maktoob.

The three month deadline given to social media platforms including Facebook, WhatsApp, Twitter, Instagram, Youtube, digital news media and OTT platforms for compliance after the notification ends on Tuesday.

Though the statement from Facebook categorically said that they aim to comply with the provisions of the new IT rules, the social media giant didn’t clarify when they will comply with it.

Experts had criticised the new IT rules, draft of which was notified in 2018, as an attempt to curb the freedom of expression.

“Facebook remains committed to people‚Äôs ability to freely and safely express themselves on our platform.” the company’s spokesperson added.

The response came a day after ministry officials warned of stern action including liable to criminal action in case of non-compliance with the new guidelines such as appointments of chief compliance and grievance officers by social media intermediaries.

The regulations mandated that social media platforms such will now have to give details about the origin of a tweet or a message on being asked by either a court or a government authority.

The regulation also requires social media companies to set up a three-tier grievance redressal framework.

PP Jaseem is a journalist based in New Delhi.