In Compliance Report Published Under New IT Rules, Koo Says It Has Moderated Over 50K Content Pieces

In Compliance Report Published Under New IT Rules, Koo Says It Has Moderated Over 50K Content Pieces The Koo icon
Snapshot
  • Koo, which has more than six million users, said its compliance report would be published and available on the first day of each month, with further insights provided when necessary.

Koo, the homegrown microblogging platform, became the first Indian social media site to publish its compliance report in accordance with the new Information Technology (IT) rules on 1 July. According to the report prepared in accordance with the new IT Rules, 2021 (Guidelines for Intermediaries and Digital Media Ethics Code), Koo moderated 54,235 content pieces, with 5,502 posts flagged by its users.

According to the June 2021 report, 22.7 per cent (1,253) of the 5,502 Koos (posts) reported by its user community were removed, while the remainder were subjected to "other action" (4,249 Koos). Additionally, Koo took proactive measures to moderate 54,235 Koos, of which 2.2 per cent (1,996) were removed, and the remainder were subjected to "other action", which includes overlay, blur, ignore, warning etc. on Koos that violate government guidelines. As per Business Standard, Aprayameya Radhakrishna, Founder & CEO, Koo, said: "As Koo gains tractions across India, we will ensure that Koo respects the law of the land and meets the requirements, enabling every country to define its own digital ecosystem. This Compliance Report is one step in that direction".

Koo, which has more than six million users and allows users to express their views in multiple Indian languages, said its compliance report would be published and available on the first day of each month, with further insights provided when necessary. Radhakrishna said: "As part of Koo's continued efforts to make social media a safer place and provide transparency for users, we are happy to be the first social media platform to publish a Compliance Report". He also added that the company would keep working to make social media a safe environment for all the users.

Large digital platforms with more than five million users will be required to post monthly compliance reports detailing the contents of complaints received and the actions taken in response to them under the new IT guidelines. The number of specific communication links or sections of material that the intermediary has blocked or disabled access to as part of any proactive monitoring should also be included in the report. These platforms must also appoint a grievance officer, a nodal officer, and a chief compliance officer, according to the IT rules. However, the condition is these individuals must be Indian citizens.

As per other reports, Google said on 30 June that in April of this year, it received 27,762 complaints from individual users in India alleging violations of local laws or personal rights, resulting in the removal of 59,350 pieces of content. Social media giant Facebook announced earlier this week that it would release an initial report on 2 July detailing the number of items it removed proactively between 15 May and 15 June. The company also stated that the final report would be released on 15 July, detailing the customer complaints received and steps are taken. The data from Facebook-owned WhatsApp will be included in the report released on 15 July.

In the case of Twitter, another major social media platform used by more than 18 million people in India, IT Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said on 16 June that the company has failed to follow intermediary norms and had "deliberately" chosen the route of non-compliance after being given repeated chances. The Hindu reported that the minister said in a series of posts on Koo: "There are numerous queries arising as to whether Twitter is entitled to safe harbour provision. However, the simple fact of the matter is that Twitter has failed to comply with the Intermediary Guidelines that came into effect from 26 May".

The rise in popularity of Koo in India coincides with the Indian government's feud with Twitter and growing calls for the country's digital ecosystem to be expanded. After union ministers and government departments in India backed the local microblogging site, Koo, which was created in 2020, has seen a tremendous increase in its user base in recent months.

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