Twitter Chief Executive Officer Jack Dorsey on Friday said social media companies were facing a “significant trust deficit” as he pledged to make its content moderation practices more transparent, reported PTI.
“... We agree many people don’t trust us,” he said. “Never has this been more pronounced than the last few years... And we aren’t alone: every institution is experiencing a significant trust deficit.”
The statement came a day after the Centre notified a set of sweeping rules to regulate social media companies, streaming services and digital news content that will virtually bring these platforms, for the first time, under the ambit of government supervision.
On Friday, the Twitter chief said that his company intends to make its content moderation practices more transparent, give people more control for their interactions, allow a marketplace approach to relevance algorithms and fund an open source social media standard.
“We are lacking in transparency and giving people more choice and control,” he said.
Dorsey said that a focus on metrics such as accountability, transparency, reliability and choice will have a huge impact. As part of the reform measures, the social media platform is planning to introduce a way for users to automatically block and mute abusive accounts, according to the Hindustan Times.
He also said that the company aims to more than double its total annual revenue to over $7.5 billion (more than Rs 55.32 thousand crore) in 2023. “This requires us to gain market share with performance ads, grow brand advertising, and expand our products to small and medium-sized businesses throughout the world,” Dorsey said.
New rules for social media
One of the most significant of the new rules introduced by the Centre is that social media platforms such as WhatsApp, Twitter, Signal and Facebook will now have to give details about the origin of a tweet or a message on being asked by either a court or a government authority. This should only be in relation to the sovereignty and integrity of India, the security of the state, public order, relations with foreign states, or rape, sexually explicit content.
The new rule could mean that messaging platforms like WhatsApp, Signal would have to break the end-to-end encryption in India in order to comply.
Additionally, the government will constitute an inter-departmental committee, called the Committee, consisting of representatives from the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting, the Ministry of Women and Child Development, Ministry of Law and Justice, Ministry of Home Affairs, Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology, Ministry of External Affairs, Ministry of Defence and the Indian Computer Emergency Response Team.
This committee will have “suo motu powers” to call hearings on complaints of violation of the code of ethics if it wants. The committee can warn, censure, admonish or reprimand violators and seek an apology besides other actions.
The regulation also requires social media companies to appoint a chief compliance officer, another executive for coordinating on law enforcement and a “grievance redressal officer”. All must be resident Indian citizens.