Union information & broadcasting minister Prakash Javadekar held an interaction through video conference with representatives of Digital News Publishers Association (DNPA) in the backdrop of the IT (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021.
The representatives were from India Today, Dainik Bhaskar, Hindustan Times, Indian Express, Times of India, ABP, Eenadu, Dainik Jagran and Lokmat.
Addressing the participants on Thursday, Javadekar informed that the new rules placed certain responsibilities on digital news publishers.
These include adherence to Code of Ethics such as the norms of journalistic conduct framed by the Press Council of India and the Programme Code under the Cable Television Network Act.
Further to redress grievances of citizens the rules have provided for a three-tier grievance redressal mechanism of which the first and second tier would be of the digital news publishers and self-regulatory bodies constituted by them.
The digital news publishers would also be required to furnish some basic information to the ministry in a simple form which is being finalised and periodically they would be required to place in public domain the grievance redressal undertaken by them, the I&B ministry said in a statement.
He stated “print media and TV channels have digital versions whose content is almost the same as that on the traditional platforms. However, there are contents which appear exclusively on the digital platform”.
“This apart there are several entities which are only on the digital platform. Accordingly, the rules seek to cover the news on digital media so as to bring them at par with the traditional media,” the ministry said.
The participants while welcoming the new rules stated that TV and news print media have been following the laid down norms of the Cable Television Network Act and the Press Council Act for a very long time.
Further for publishing the digital versions the publishers do follow the existing norms of the traditional platforms. They felt that they should be treated differently than those news publishers who are only on the digital platform.
Javadekar thanked the participants for expressing their views and stated that the government will take note of the same and continue with this consultative process for overall growth of the media industry.