No govt member in self-regulating body: Javadekar on meeting OTT players

No govt member in self-regulating body: Javadekar on meeting OTT players

New Delhi: After the government introduced the new rules for digital media and OTT platforms, it emphasises the need for self-regulation for the newest form of media.

The Union Information and Broadcast Minister Prakash Javadekar on Thursday met representatives of various OTT platforms including Alt Balaji, Hotstar, Amazon Prime, Netflix, Jio, Zee5, Viacom18, Shemaroo, MxPlayer and clarified that in the self-regulating body, no member will be appointed by the government.

In the past, the ministry had done several rounds of consultation with the OTT players. "The government will create the Inter-Departmental Committee to look at complaints that remain unresolved at the self-regulatory level," Javadekar informed.

"The minister had received representations from cinema and TV industries that while there were regulations for them, none existed for OTT industry. Thus, it was decided that the Government would come out with a progressive institutional mechanism for OTT players and develop a level playing field with the idea of self-regulation," the ministry official statement added.

Further, informing the industry representatives about the provisions of the rules, Javadekar said it merely requires them to disclose information and that there is no requirement of registration of any kind with the government.

The new rules focus on the self-classification of content instead of any form of censorship. Further, OTT platforms are expected to develop an effective grievance redressal mechanism, the I&B ministry added.

Social media platforms in India - Facebook, WhatsApp, Google's YouTube, Twitter, and other OTT platforms now face a new set of rules and regulation set to be enforced after mid-May. The Indian government has laid rules for a physical presence, monitoring of harmful content, tracking down the first originator of mischief, and the voluntary verification of users. These regulations are called the Information Technology (Guidelines for Intermediaries and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021 (Rules).

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