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Twitter to appoint new India interim grievance officer within 2 weeks, hires interim compliance officer

The Delhi High Court had given Twitter two days’ time to confirm when it would comply with the provisions of the IT Rules 2021.

By Aroon Deep and Aihik Sur

Twitter said in a note filed in the Delhi High Court that it will work with a third-party contractor to appoint an interim grievance officer within 2 weeks, and will fill the position of a full-time resident grievance officer within 8 weeks. MediaNama has viewed a copy of the note filed by the social media company. This appointment is required by the Information Technology (Intermediary Guidelines and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021.

Compliance report on July 11: The company said in its note that it would file a compliance report required under Rule 4(d) of the IT Rules for Significant Social Media Intermediaries (who have more than 50 lakh members) by Sunday. Facebook, Google, and Koo have already put out their first monthly reports under this provision.

Additionally, the company revealed, it hired an interim Chief Compliance Officer on July 6. The case in which this filing was made, initiated by petitioner Amit Acharya, is due to come up for hearing on Thursday, but as of the publishing of this report, the hearing has not yet taken place. We will update this report when the hearing happens.

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“Twitter has appointed a resident of India as its interim Chief Compliance Officer (“Interim CCO”) effective 6th July 2021. Twitter has engaged the services of the Interim CCO as a contingent worker via a third-party contractor,” the company said in its filing.

“Twitter will endeavor in good faith to make an offer of employment to a qualified candidate to fill this position within 8 weeks,” the note said. A similar promise of attempting to fill the grievance officer position was made for the grievance officer position as well as the nodal officer position. The company added that an Indian address has been added in order to aid in the documentation of grievances from India.

The company was pulled up by the Delhi High Court for not hiring a resident grievance officer under the Rules. In a Tuesday hearing, the Delhi High Court said that it would not permit the company to drag out its compliance indefinitely. The government had said in an affidavit that Twitter’s non-compliance essentially deprived the microblogging platform of intermediary liability protections, making the company directly responsible for content posted on its platform. The court did not directly address this assessment on Tuesday.

Correction (4:45pm): An earlier version of this story made reference to an “affidavit” filed by Twitter. Twitter said in the Delhi High Court that the contents of the filing would later be submitted as an affidavit, after being notarized in the United States. This makes the current filing a note, not an affidavit. The error is regretted.

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I cover the digital content ecosystem and telecom for MediaNama.

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