Twitter is the only social media giant that is simply refusing to comply with the new social media guidelines released by the government of India. 26 May was the last date for social media companies to comply with the new rules. Except for Koo, no other platform had complied with the guidelines by then. However, after the Modi government made it clear that such platforms who were not complying with the new rules would be criminally prosecuted and not allowed to operate in Indian markets, almost all major giants – Facebook and Google included, assured that they were in the process of complying with the rules.
Twitter, however, seems least interested to comply with Indian laws. It is almost as if the microblogging site wants to test the Indian government’s patience. Even WhatsApp for that matter has sued the government by approaching the Delhi Court against the new social media guidelines, claiming that the new rules are an affront to an individual’s privacy. The government, meanwhile, has debunked such propaganda of WhatsApp and termed the messaging app’s legal challenge to the new rules as “an unfortunate attempt to prevent norms from coming into effect.”
Google chief executive Sundar Pichai on Thursday said the tech giant is committed to complying with India’s new IT rules. “We are committed to complying (with the laws). And to the extent, there are requests (for information on users) we comply with and we will include that in our transparency reports. It is a framework with which we will operate it around the world,” Sundar Pichai said.
While Twitter was served a stern message when Delhi Police paid a visit to its office, a flustered Facebook took pre-emptive measures and announced that it was ready to comply with the provisions of the IT rules. “We aim to comply with the provisions of the IT rules and continue to discuss a few of the issues which need more engagement with the government. Pursuant to the IT rules, we are working to implement operational processes and improve efficiencies” a Facebook spokesperson was quoted as saying by ANI.
Twitter, meanwhile, just when this report was being filed, released an arrogant statement saying, “To keep our service available, we will strive to comply with applicable law in India. But, just as we do around the world, we will continue to be strictly guided by principles of transparency, a commitment to empowering every voice on the service, and protecting freedom of expression and privacy under the rule of law.”
Said Twitter, “Right now, we are concerned by recent events regarding our employees in India and the potential threat to freedom of expression for the people we serve. We, alongside many in civil society in India and around the world, have concerns with regards to the use of intimidation tactics by the police in response to enforcement of our global Terms of Service, as well as with core elements of the new IT Rules.”
The microblogging site also called the new social media rules in India “regulations that inhibit free, open public conversation.”
Twitter is really punching way above its weight this time. With its latest statement and actions taken at the behest of the Indian National Congress, the microblogging site is digging its own grave in India.