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IT Ministry Summons Social Media Giants to Tackle Growing Concern

by Sana Gori
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The Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) has taken a proactive step in addressing the growing concerns related to deepfake content on social media platforms. Officials from major social media companies have been summoned for a meeting on “Nuisances of deepfake content on Social Media Platforms,” scheduled for November 23. The decision comes in the wake of Prime Minister Narendra Modi expressing apprehension about the misuse of technology, particularly artificial intelligence (AI), to create deepfakes.

Prime Minister’s Concerns on Deepfake Misuse:

Prime Minister Modi highlighted the emerging crisis due to deepfakes produced through AI. He expressed concern over the potential misuse of technology, stating, “This (deepfake) will take us to grave danger and has the potential to spread the fire of dissatisfaction.” The lack of a parallel verification system for a significant section of society adds to the challenge of combating deepfake content.

IT Ministry

IT Ministry’s Actions:

Following the circulation of a viral fake video of Telugu actor Rashmika Mandanna, the IT ministry sent letters to all social media platforms, emphasizing their responsibility to combat misinformation and deepfakes as mandated by Indian law. The ministry stressed that the globally accepted safe harbor provision might not apply if platforms do not make adequate efforts to control deepfakes. The immunity granted to platforms can be at risk, subject to court decisions regarding safe harbour protection.

Measures to Combat Deepfakes

The ministry had previously issued an advisory in February, urging social media platforms to implement suitable technology and processes for identifying information that may violate rules, regulations, or user agreements. Minister Vaishnaw expressed confidence that platforms should have the capability to identify and remove deepfake content.

The upcoming meeting signifies a collaborative effort between the government and social media giants to address the challenges posed by deepfakes and work towards effective solutions to curb their proliferation on digital platforms.

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