back to article India, Twitter brawl in public as latest content rules begin to bite

Twitter has taken issue with India’s Digital Media Ethics Code – and India’s government has responded with a forcefully worded press release that accuses the micro-blogging site of defying and defaming the nation. The source of this stoush is India’s Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Broad brush.

    "any information prohibited by... sovereignty and integrity of India"

    NOT defending Twitter, but "integrity" is a pretty broad scope, almost completely opinionated (but by who's opinion?).

    "hiding behind its US operations... not taking Indian laws seriously"

    Twitter doesn't hide, they don't even take US laws seriously. Of course, what is Twitter "hiding" from?

    “incitement to an offence,”

    So it's better to pretend you don't have a government to talk about so your government can do anything it wants and as a bonus you won't be REPORTED...

    I'm going to go ahead and scratch off India from the list of "nice places to visit".

    1. Paul Crawford Silver badge

      Re: Broad brush.

      I have been to India once and it is a nice place to visit.

      But they have as obnoxious and self-opinionated politicians as they come and with a back story of racial/religious tensions and piss-poor handling of the pandemic in recent months you can see them trying to fight public opinion by attacking the media.

      A big factor in this terrible wave of death in India was the resumption of public rallies for the elections. Hubris.

    2. Robert D Bank

      Re: Broad brush.

      I have been to India twice, 2002 and 2011. Like anywhere a mix of good and bad, but there seems to be a stark difference between the much more relaxed south, from the Chennai/Bangalore line down, to the mid part of country above where we encountered a lot more aggression and just sheer hassle at virtually every step. Goa was a bit of an exception to that. Haven't been to the far north yet so not sure what to expect but Sikkim and Assam look nice.

      Just reading this about the current situation there which is really scary, and how the Gov't is absolutely hiding the truth on Covid death rates etc. Seem like at least 10/1 more than reported, and most likely a lot more. For example in rural villages only 1 in 5 deaths are reported even in normal times.

      https://qz.com/india/2009723/how-journalists-are-exposing-indias-true-covid-19-death-toll/

      1. WhereAmI?

        Re: Broad brush.

        IME once you get north of the Sutlej River it all changes again as you move out of Hindu-dominated areas into Bhuddist-dominated areas. I guess the other thing is that you're now into the mountains proper and sel-reliance is an absolute must. I found that the villagers couldn't do enough for you.

        But yes, to get back on topic, Modi is simply going with what he promised at the election; Hindu domination where everybody else is in the wrong. Controlling the narrative is just one arm of the policy.

    3. veti Silver badge

      Re: Broad brush.

      India has its strengths, but sadly it's fallen under the sway of a politician who is like a more competent, and more evil, version of Trump. Watch closely. It's become a bellwether for demagogues.

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The Twitter Hive Mind is excellent for routing around Government Censorship & its Media Lapdogs.

    I’ve virtually stopped digesting the MSM in favour of reading Twitter during the Pandemic.

    How soon before it's banned in the UK as well?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: The Twitter Hive Mind is excellent for routing around Government Censorship & its Media Lapdogs.

      But how do you get around Twitters censorship?

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: The Twitter Hive Mind is excellent for routing around Government Censorship & its Media Lapdogs.

        You can't avoid infinite recursion, but Twitter is a better source of news than most.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: The Twitter Hive Mind is excellent for routing around Government Censorship & its Media Lapdogs.

          Why do you need news?

          Take the two week media detox challenge. Switch it all off and see how you feel. You'll only be happier!

          1. Anonymous Coward
            Anonymous Coward

            Re: The Twitter Hive Mind is excellent for routing around Government Censorship & its Media Lapdogs.

            Oh, great! The same kind of happiness that doesn't see the massive truck about to hit me ... hmm, let me think about that for a second ... nah, I'll take a mix of happy/unhappy to get at least a little actual knowledge of the world around me thanks.

        2. Stanislav Bonita
          Thumb Down

          Re: The Twitter Hive Mind is excellent for routing around Government Censorship & its Media Lapdogs.

          Many of the news links Twitter promotes are from The Telegraph...

          Are you sure you want to die on this hill?

    2. veti Silver badge

      Re: The Twitter Hive Mind is excellent for routing around Government Censorship & its Media Lapdogs.

      Yeah, I tried that once.

      What I found: most of the posts on Twitter were rehashing, and "hash" was definitely the word, stories from conventional media. Others were reacting, amplifying and generally distorting those same stories. A few were speculating wildly, and attracting much the same "tail" of reaction as the first category. There was no (as in, zero) actual first hand information on the story I was looking for.

  3. T. F. M. Reader Silver badge

    If I were Jack Dorsey

    I'd instruct the crew of my private plane to avoid Indian airspace from now on. Just prudent, in the current climate.

  4. Chris G Silver badge

    Originator ID

    Is enough to show that this is about control, then when you read that almost any criticism or even pointing out the problems occuring in the country are construed as defamatory to the nation, you know it is about controlling the narrative.

    Farmers in India have been getting a bad deal for decades, largely driven by moves to corporatise farming or dictate the crops that are grown in some regions. Look up Indian farmers committing suicide.

  5. msobkow Bronze badge

    Oh, so INdia dreams of being another dictatorship that allows no dissent or discussion, eh?

    Perhaps if they feel so bad about the internet, they should cut themselves off from the public internet. After all, no one nation gets to dictate how the internet runs or operates, especially when dealing with companies that aren't BASED in your nation.

    What has India got to lose by cutting themselves off from the internet?

    Oh, yeah, all those juicy billions in outsourcing revenue that undercut the North American providers and resulted in thousands of layoffs.... pity, that.

    1. Robert D Bank

      Imagine the beautiful silence from the absence of scam calls!

    2. Chris G Silver badge

      "Oh, so INdia dreams of being another dictatorship that allows no dissent or discussion, eh?"

      Not India as such but the current government certainly is less than keen on criticism at any level and has some far right tendencies.

      India itself is a country with millions of poor who will hopefully benefit from the internet in many ways.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        And this is different from the US of A how exactly ?

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Originator ID & GDPR

    How does the Indian requirement to identify the original source of a posting work if that source is outside India? Specifically, if the source is inside the EU? I'd have thought that linking a particular posting with a specific EU citizen would involve revealing personal information about that citizen, and EU law might have something to say about that?

  7. MachDiamond Silver badge

    Twitter may have a problem

    In a battle between Twitter's hubris and that of a government, Twitter is going to lose. By the stroke of a pen Twitter can be removed from the Indian internet, its higher ups jailed and its assets impounded. It might be hard to root Twitter completely out, but if it's a big pain to access, people will find something else.

    1. EnviableOne Silver badge

      Re: Twitter may have a problem

      They can remove it from the Indian internet, but Indians will still be able to access it unless they go for the full great firewall treatment.

      They can't jail the higher-ups and impound any assets not in India, without recourse to outside authority.

      Jack et all, just need to avoid the sub-continent to stay out of jail, as the US/India extradition agreement Article 4 incorporates a political offence exception to the obligation to extradite.

      people may find something else, but from a twitter point of view, it's how the revenue from Indian advertising stacks up against their morals, and from previous behaviour, morals are more highly valued than at Google or Facebook.

POST COMMENT House rules

Not a member of The Register? Create a new account here.

  • Enter your comment

  • Add an icon

Anonymous cowards cannot choose their icon

Biting the hand that feeds IT © 1998–2021