Govt asks Twitter to remove objectionable content ahead of polls

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Ahead of imminent Lok Sabha elections and ongoing polls in key states the government has asked the micro-blogging platform Twitter to remove objectionable content from there platform.

The Union Home Secretary Rajiv Gauba held a meeting with top representatives from micro-blogging platform Twitter on Monday and asked them to implement a mechanism for removal of unlawful and objectionable content.

A statement from the Ministry of Home Affairs confirmed that Twitter’s global head of Legal, Policy, Trust and Safety Lead, Vijaya Gadde and the Indian representative of Twitter, Mahima Kaul met with Gauba on Monday .

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The Twitter representatives were also asked to improve their system of response to investigations related legal requests of law enforcement agencies under provisions of Criminal Penal Code and other laws.

In the recent past, there have been instances of mob lynching based on fake messages and rumours circulating on social media, specifically Whatsapp. Many people have dies due to in these acts of mob aggression.

“It has been noticed that action taken by Twitter for removing/blocking of objectionable/unlawful content has been slow in some cases and compliance for removal of unlawful content has been only about 60 per cent even where orders have been issued by the competent authority after following due process of law,” the statement read.

“During the meeting, specific instances of legal requisitions were shown where Delhi police had sought for removal of content openly inciting violence where response by Twitter had been neither full nor timely. Specific legal notices issued by the Delhi Police seeking investigation-related information were also shared with them,” the statement added.
The Union Home Secretary has held meetings with social media platforms in June and October 2018. A series of meetings have been conducted by senior officers of MHA, Delhi Police and police officers of other States to sensitise the country representatives of social media platforms about the gravity of unlawful, objectionable content posted on their platforms, and their possible consequences.
Earlier in the month the Twitter CEO, who is visiting India said that there is no perfect solution for fake news.


“There is no perfect solution when it comes to suppressing misleading tweets,” said Twitter CEO and co-founder Jack Dorsey, on his maiden visit to India. Addressing a town hall event at the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, on Monday, Dorsey said: “In a number of conversations, it has become more important that we scope the problem as tightly as possible because fake news, or misinformation, as a category, is way too big.”

“The problem with fake news and misinformation is that it leads people to take action,” he said. “Our job is not identifying misinformation, but misleading information since the former also comes in the form of jokes. Our job is to make sure it does not spread the content,” added Dorsey.

(with ANI inputs)

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