Social media law India is regulated by the Information Technology Act which was enacted in the year 2000 to regulate, control and deal with the issues arising out of the IT.
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A brief discussion on Social Media Law India
- Posting of defamatory comment or material against someone- Offence under Section 66A of the IT Act, punishable with imprisonment.
- Even liking of sharing such comments can constitute an offense.
- Posting defamatory material or comment- Criminal defamation under Section 499 of IPC.
- Posting of defamatory material or comment against someone- he or she can sue you before the civil court and seek damages besides injunction.
- Posting or selling pornographic material on the net- Offence under Section 292, 292A, 293, 294 IPC punishable with imprisonment.
- Posting secret information, documents of Government, photographs of prohibited place- Punishable for the violation of Officials Secrets Act.
- Posting copied material on the website- Offence under the Copyright Act.
Dos and Don’ts on social media:
- Do not make unknown people as friends.
- Do not like or share seemingly offensive comments.
- Do not make offensive comments against anyone.
- Do not post or share offensive material even against your know persons.
- Do not share any link with porn sites or porn material.
- Do not post copied material anywhere as it may be in violation of the Copyright Act.
Social Media Law India:
Section 66 A was added to the said Act vide an amendment in 2008 when Section 66 itself was found insufficient to handle all the issues arising out of the use of the internet.
The IT Act mainly handles the following main subjects:
- Legal recognition of electronic documents
- Legal Recognition of digital signatures
- Offenses and contraventions Justice dispensation systems for cyber crimes
Section 66 A of the IT Act which mainly regulates the Social Media Law India reads as under:
Section 66 A: Punishment for sending offensive messages through communication service etc. Any person who sends, by means of a computer resource or a communication device, Any information that is grossly offensive or has menacing character, or any information which he knows to be false, but for the purpose of causing annoyance, inconvenience, danger, obstruction, insult, injury, criminal intimidation, enmity, hatred, or ill will, persistently makes by making use of such computer resource or communication device.
Any electronic mail or electronic mail message for the purpose of causing annoyance or inconvenience or to deceive or to mislead the addressee or recipient about the origin of such messages. Shall be punishable with imprisonment for a term which may extend to three years and with a fine.
Explanation For the purposes of this section terms “Electronic mail” and “Electronic Mail Message” means a message or information created or transmitted or received on a computer, computer system, computer resource or communication device including attachments in text, image, audio, video and any other electronic record, which may be transmitted with the message.
Section 66A of the IT Act has been enacted to regulate Social Media Law India and assumes importance as it control and regulates all the legal issues related to Social Media Law India. This section clearly restricts the transmission, posting of messages, emails, comments which can be offensive or unwarranted.
The offending message can be in the form of text, image, audio, video or any other electronic record which is capable of being transmitted. In the current scenario, such sweeping powers under the IT Act provides a tool in the hands of the Government to curb the misuse of the Social Media Law India in any form.
The original Section 66 of the IT Act 2000 was only limited to the hacking which proved to be ineffective in tackling the problems of wrongful emails, messages and campaigns on social media like Facebook, Tweeter. While judging the Social Media Law India one has to see Section 66A Information Technology Act 2000 and Social Media Law from the point of view of the freedom of expression granted under the Indian Constitution which is based on the principles of co-existence of the rights of all citizen and the power of the State.
The freedom of expression is not absolute freedom which anybody can claim to enjoy. It is always subject to certain restrictions which the State may impose in the interest of the citizen of the country.
The act of posting an offending comment on social media does not and cannot grant immunity from criminal prosecution for offending someone or causing a rift in the society on social or religious lines.
Social Media Law India needs to be enforced strictly as the effectiveness of social media can be misused by vested interest.
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