Post Trump's Twitter ouster, experts ask platforms for consistency in enforcing policies

NEW DELHI | BENGALURU: Social media platforms have been urged to apply their policies consistently across the world, in light of the recent ban on outgoing US President Donald Trump from such platforms, which experts have criticised as a case of acting ‘too late’.

Trump was banned from Twitter permanently, while social networks Facebook and Instagram suspended him indefinitely. He is accused of using the social media platforms to incite fans who stormed the Capitol Hill last week, hoping to stop the certification of Democrat Joe Biden’s election as the next US President. Following the chaos, Trump has now assured a peaceful transition.

Social media companies have treated India differently though, the experts said, when it comes to policing instances of abuse, threats and incitement towards violence through hate speech. There is also a complete lack of transparency in decision making and inconsistent application of policies by the social media firms, they said.

“Enforcement of the Twitter Rules is uniform, judicious and impartial for all users, regardless of their political beliefs, background or geography,” a Twitter spokesperson said. “In all of our moderation efforts we assess behaviour before content since this can be the strongest indicator of unhealthy behaviour.”

On the other hand, some have called for reining in social media companies for the immense clout that they hold in taking such actions.

The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party‘s Member of Parliament from Bengaluru, Tejasvi Surya, who is also a member of the Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology, has asked the government to review the IT Intermediaries Guidelines that give immunity to social media companies for user generated content, but also allow them to moderate speech based on their internal policies.

“This must be a wake-up call for all who don’t yet understand the threat to our democracies by unregulated big tech companies. If they can do this to POTUS, they can do this to anyone. Sooner India reviews Intermediaries regulations, better for our democracy,” he said.

Surya said he has urged the government to repeal the IT Intermediaries Guidelines Rules.

“Intermediaries, as per their definition, can’t interfere in content on social media platforms. But rules thereunder say otherwise. This anomaly must be addressed immediately,” he said.

The Ministry of Electronics and IT (MeitY) is in the process of amending the guidelines under Section 79 of the IT Act with the objective of making social media companies more accountable. The process has, however, yet to be finalised.

Post Trump's Twitter ouster, experts ask platforms for consistency in enforcing policies Post Trump's Twitter ouster, experts ask platforms for consistency in enforcing policies Reviewed by TechCO on 1/11/2021 Rating: 5

No comments:

ads 728x90 B
Powered by Blogger.