Government advocates self regulation for video OTT sector

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Updated: November 14, 2019 12:40:16 PM

The government is currently in favour of self-regulation however may intervene if the industry fails to arrive at a consensus

According to Khare while OTT platforms such as Netflix have agreed to self regulate content, there are many that haven’t.According to Khare  OTT platforms such as Netflix have agreed to self regulate content.

The video OTT industry which currently has as many as 25-30 players, will have its own set of regulation Amit Khare, secretary of Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, said on sidelines of the eight edition of the CII Big Picture Summit, which is currently being held in Delhi. However, Khare emphasised on the need for self-regulation adding that the government will intervene only if the industry fails to come to a consensus.

The ministry which recently conducted consultation workshops in Chennai and Mumbai, plans to hold another one in Delhi, post the end of Parliament session.

According to Khare while OTT platforms such as Netflix have agreed to self regulate content, there are many that haven’t. “We are still waiting for a response from the industry,” he added.

Post, the consultation session, the ministry will roll out draft regulation. As per Khare, the broadcaster industry currently follows self-regulation through several industry bodies such as News Broadcasters Association (NBA), IBF controlled Broadcasting Content Complaints Council (BCCC) among others. “The idea is that OTT industry should follow the same model or else the government will intervene,” he said.

Earlier in the morning Sudhanshu Vats, chairman, CII National Committee on media and entertainment and Group CEO and MD, Viacom18 Media, said that the government can either be a helicopter parent in terms of regulating the industry or allow it to grow on its own. He also emphasised on the need for regulation for the OTT industry.

It should be noted that the industry body Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI) drafted a code of self-regulation for video streaming OTT platforms on January 17, 2019. Titled ‘Code of Best Practices for Online Curated Content Providers’, the report curbs OTT platforms from streaming content which is banned by Indian courts, disrespect the national emblem, outrages religious sentiments, promotes violence against the states or terrorism, or depicts sexual acts committed by children.

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