Govt to meet social media platforms on deepfake issue; immunity will not apply if steps are not taken: Vaishnaw

04:15 PM Nov 18, 2023 | PTI |

New Delhi: The government will soon meet social media platforms on the deepfake issue, IT Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw said on Saturday, asserting that the safe harbour immunity clause will not apply if platforms do not take adequate steps to remove deepfakes.


Vaishnaw told reporters that the government had recently issued a notice to companies on the deepfake issue, and the platforms responded, but added that the firms will have to be more aggressive in taking action on such content.

“They are taking steps…but we think that many more steps will have to be taken. And we are very soon going to have a meeting of all the platforms…Maybe in the next 3-4 days, we’ll call them for brainstorming on that and make sure that platforms make adequate efforts for preventing it (deepfakes), and cleaning up their system,” Vaishnaw told reporters.

Asked if big platforms like Meta and Google would be called for the meeting, the minister replied in the affirmative.

Vaishnaw also made it clear that the safe harbour immunity that platforms currently enjoy under the IT Act will not be applicable unless they take adequate action.


“The safe harbour clause, which most social media platforms have been enjoying…that does not apply if they do not take adequate steps for removing deepfakes from their platforms,” he said. Recently, several ‘deepfake’ videos targeting leading actors went viral, sparking outrage and raising concerns over the misuse of technology and tools for creating fake content and narratives.

On Friday, Prime Minister Narendra Modi cautioned that deepfakes created by artificial intelligence can lead to a big crisis and stoke discontent in society, as he urged the media to raise awareness about its misuse and educate people.


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