Twitter “Temporarily Denies Access” to the account of IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad; Authorized after ‘Warning’

Electronics and Information Technology Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad was reportedly denied access to his own Twitter account for nearly an hour today, government sources said. Although the minister’s Twitter account is visible to the public, Twitter did not allow anyone with authorized access to that account to log in or post a message, they added.

When the Minister and his team tried to connect to the @rsprasad Twitter account, they received a message saying: “Your account has been locked because Twitter has received a Digital Millennium Copyright Act (DMCA) compliant notice for the posted content. on your Twitter account. . Under the DMCA, copyright owners can notify Twitter by claiming that a user has infringed their copyrighted works. Upon receipt of a valid notice, Twitter will delete the identified material. Twitter maintains a policy of repeated copyright infringement under the repeated infringer accounts will be suspended. Accumulating multiple DMCA warnings may result in your account being suspended.

The minister used the indigenous social messaging app Koo and later Twitter to share his “special” experience.

About an hour later, however, government sources said Twitter authorized access to the account by posting a warning message on the minister’s account stating, “Your account is now available. Please note that any further notice regarding your account may result in your account being locked out again and potentially its suspension. In order to avoid this, do not post additional material in violation of our copyright policy and immediately remove any material from your account that you are not authorized to post.

Sources on the minister’s team said Twitter had given them no prior indication before blocking access to the account or specified content that violated US copyright laws.

Rule 4 (8) of the New Notified Information Technology Rules (Intermediate Guidelines and Code of Ethics for Digital Media), 2021 clearly states that whenever content that does not belong to the user is shared on a social media platform, the social media intermediary must to remove or deactivate access, it has provided the user who shared such content with a notification explaining the action taken and the motives or reasons of this action.

Twitter and the government have been at loggerheads on several occasions in recent months, most notably during the farmers’ protest and later when the microblogging platform called political messages from several leaders of the ruling BJP party as ” media manipulated ”, triggering a sharp rebuke from the center.

Earlier this month, the Center sent a notice to Twitter giving it one last chance to comply “immediately” with the new IT rules and warned that failure to comply with the standards would result in the loss of the Company’s liability waiver the platform under the Computer Law.

The government earlier this week slammed Twitter for willful defiance and disregarding IT rules, leading the US giant to lose its intermediary status in India and become responsible for users posting any illegal content. Twitter has reportedly not fully complied with the new rules, called interim directives, which require the establishment of a grievance mechanism and the appointment of officers responsible for coordinating with law enforcement. The rules went into effect on May 26 and Twitter, even after the extra time had expired, failed to name the required officers, causing it to lose “safe haven” immunity.

The Standing Parliamentary Committee on Information Technology, chaired by Congress Chief Shashi Tharoor, summoned Twitter officials over issues related to the platform’s misuse and protection of human rights. citizens. Panel members posed difficult and in-depth questions to officials at Twitter India on Friday, but their answers lacked clarity and were ambiguous, sources said.

The members strongly opposed the observation by officials of Twitter India that its policy is on par with the rule of the land and categorically told them that “the rule of the land is supreme, not your policy,” said sources.

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