Prime Video, Netflix, Hotstar, among other OTT platforms adopt self-regulation toolkit

  • IAMAI announced the adoption of a comprehensive implementation toolkit with OTT platforms such as Amazon Prime Video, Hotstar, Netflix, MX Player, ALTBalaji, and 12 others.
  • The toolkit came into effect on February 10, 2021.
  • I&B Ministry will going to review the implementation toolkit and will respond accordingly.

Internet and Mobile Association of India (IAMAI), along with 17 over-the-top (OTT) platforms including Amazon Prime Video and Netflix today announced the adoption of the self-regulation toolkit.

Over-the-top (OTT) platforms including, ZEE5, Voot, Disney+Hotstar, SonyLiv, MX Player, Jio Cinema, Eros Now, Alt Balaji, Arre, HoiChoi, Hungama, Shemaroo, Amazon Prime Video, Netflix, and Discovery Plus, have adopted the code that will focus on grievance redressal and setting up of complaints committees.

The core purpose of adoption of this toolkit is to provide procedures to effectuate the various provisions of the Code; assist the signatories in fulfilling their commitments and responsibilities as set out in the Code; and to achieve effective self-regulation goals as envisioned by the signatories in the Code.

Through this toolkit, OTT platforms will also be able to address the feedback received from the I&B Ministry iner-Alia, on the issues of conflict of interest and prohibited content.

The toolkit came into effect on February 10, 2021. Meanwhile, Information and Broadcasting Ministry had said that they will review the toolkit and will act accordingly.

Last week, Union minister Prakash Javadekar had said that the guidelines for OTT platforms have almost been finalized and will be implemented soon. The new guidelines will address the issues such as sexual discrimination, abusive language, and sensitive content.

“It is an important issue. We get a lot of suggestions and complaints. Guidelines and directions are almost ready. It will be soon implemented,” Javadekar said.

The upbringing of regulation has become a sore point for the Indian government as it has received various complaints and suggestions regarding the content published on the OTT platforms.

Earlier today, the government has filed a transfer petition in the Supreme Court, seeking the transfer of cases pending in different High Courts for the regulation of OTT platforms. 

Commenting on the development, Amit Goenka, Chair, Digital Entertainment Committee, IAMAI said, “With the adoption of ‘Implementation Toolkit’, it further strengthens our (OCCPs) commitment to augment consumer empowerment and creative excellence for the Indian entertainment industry to grow multifold.”

“This Tool Kit amplifies all the critical points that were addressed in the Code signed last year and aims to address feedback received from the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, particularly on strengthening the grievance redressal mechanism. It further sets out clear tentpoles that the OCCPs need to undertake to achieve a common goal of entertaining millions of Indians responsibly,” he added.

IAMAI expects to develop a process to seek periodic updates from the signatories regarding their progress with respect to compliance with the provisions of the Code. 

Following are the core factors that the toolkit is focused on:

  • Fair and transparent functioning of the grievance redressal mechanism, with escalation to an Advisory Panel with independent members.
  • Training programs for creative and legal teams of OCCPs
  • Awareness programs for consumers.
  • Implementation of a detailed audit and compliance mechanism.

In Earlier September 2020, 15 OTT platforms have adopted the self-regulation code however the government had termed the self-regulation code as unacceptable.

In November 2020, The central government bought the OTT platforms under the regulation of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting.

The Internet & Mobile Association (IAMAI) of India is a not-for-profit industry body registered under the societies act, 1896.

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