InvestorQ : What are the new rules announced by the government on OTT regulation?
Niti Shenoi made post

What are the new rules announced by the government on OTT regulation?

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ishika Banerjee answered.
2 months ago
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In the first step to bring OTT platforms under routine regulation, the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting has ordained that all OTT platforms should self-classify the content into five age-based categories. These would include categories like U (Universal), U/A, (above 7 years), U/A above (13 years), U/A (above 16 years), and A (all adults). This is part of the elaborate set of guidelines issued by the government on this subject.

In addition, it has also been stipulated that all the OTT Platforms should mandatorily implement parental lock systems for content classified as U/A 13+ or higher. In addition, the OTT platforms have also been called upon to conduct a very authentic and reliable age verification mechanism for content classified as A.

In addition, it has also been ordained that the publisher of the online curated content will have to mandatorily display the classification rating specific to each content or programme. This has to be done together with a content descriptor informing the user about the nature of the content, and a clear advisory on viewer description at the beginning of every programme. This should enable viewers to make an informed decision.

It has also been ordained that as a matter of policy, OTT platforms and all forms of digital media must be sensitive when it comes to publishing any multi-religious content and shall exercise due caution. They should avoid any statement or content that is prejudicial to any race, ethnic group, tribe, religious group etc. OTT platforms have also been called upon to have a self-regulatory body headed by a retired Supreme Court judge.

In the last few months, especially after the proliferation of the OTT platforms during the lockdown, there have been widespread content concerns. This had necessitated an appropriate institutional mechanism to address these concerns and this regulation is the first step. The new guidelines will be administered by the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting. Digital media will also have to adhere to journalistic conduct of the PCI.

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