Vinay Prakash is appointed as the new Grievance Officer for Twitter India to meet the requirements of the IT rules of 2021. This announcement was made via the company’s website. Twitter posted the news two days ago with Vinay Prakash’s contact details and Twitter’s agreement to the new IT rules set by the government.
The company asked for a time of eight weeks from the Delhi High Court to decide its new grievance officer and said the decision for the same would be announced on 11th July on the company’s website. Other social media giants – Facebook, Google, and Telegram had already appointed these local Compliance Officers in India.
This job appointment comes amidst the huge standoff with the Indian Government since February 2021, even since the new IT rules came into the picture. The new IT rules which were unveiled in February and came into effect in May demanded an Indian resident Chief Compliance Officer as one of the major points amongst others. Twitter was the last one to comply with the demands of this new rule, Google, Facebook, and WhatsApp had already submitted their agreement with the new rules. The new guidelines aimed at regulating content on social media firms namely –Facebook, WhatsApp, and Twitter, asking these big firms to allow the swift removal of posts and sharing details about the originators of the messages. Also, the content or post which will be demanded to be removed must be trashed within 36 hours after the legal order is passed, If not so the employees can be held criminally liable for failing to comply with the requests of the government. Twitter apparently expressed its concern about how these new rules can be a threat to the freedom of expression which the social media platforms give to its users.
Earlier, Internet giants used to enjoy what is called “safe harbor” protection which means that they could not be held legally responsible for what their users write or do on their platforms. For example, if someone has abused someone publically, on let’s say Twitter then the government can only ask Twitter to remove such posts but it cannot force the company because ultimately the company is not legally bound to comply with this demand.
The government has ensured that the new IT policy and rules are in favor of the users.