The Parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology (IT) has asked the social media platforms including Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram to tackle fake news and engage more with the Election Commission of India ahead of Election.
According to some sources, the panel also sought a detailed report from Facebook, WhatsApp, and Instagram regarding steps to safeguard user data and information. The Anurag-Thakur-led panel directed the social media companies to inform them about the measures taken by them to prevent the spread of fake news, especially during the high election time. The panel also asked social media companies to engage more with the Election Commission of India (ECI) ahead of general election 2019.
During the hearing, the Parliamentary Standing Committee asked, “Is your platform serving society or dividing communities?”, Facebook said, “They are a “hybrid company.” Facebook Global Policy Head also apologized before the parliamentary panel for remarks made by Facebook employees on terrorism and Pulwama attack. The Panel directed the social media companies to send them clear written replies in 10 days.
Facebook has about 300 million users, WhatsApp about 200 million users, and Instagram has nearly 75 million users in India. With that much users, these social media platform can be useful as well as dangerous to society.