HC: So­cial me­dia cos li­able for their mis­use

The Times of India (New Delhi edition) - - Times Nation - NEWS NET­WORK

TIMES

Chen­nai: The Madras high court said on Friday that so­cial me­dia com­pa­nies can­not avoid li­a­bil­ity for dam­age to so­ci­ety caused by ru­mour and mis­in­for­ma­tion passed through their plat­forms and they need to be held more ac­count­able for such mis­use by users.

“Fake news, mis­in­for­ma­tion and hate speeches can reach hun­dreds of peo­ple and con­se­quently have a psy­cho­log­i­cal im­pact on them, lead­ing to even un­rest. Law and or­der would be dis­rupted. The plat­forms can­not avoid li­a­bil­ity for the dam­age that has been caused through its use,” the court said.

Adi­vi­sion bench made the ob­ser­va­tion on a plea by Antony Cle­ment Ru­bin whose sought link­ing of Aad­haar with so­cial me­dia ac­counts to check cy­ber­crime. The plea was later al­tered to en­sure co­op­er­a­tion of so­cial me­dia firms in cy­ber­crime probes.

The court, how­ever, said in In­dia the fun­da­men­tal right to pri­vacy was not ab­so­lute and that the “pri­vacy doc­trine can­not out­weigh the greater im­pact on the peace of so­ci­ety”. Free­dom of speech comes with re­spon­si­bil­ity, it added.

The bench ad­journed the hear­ing to Oc­to­ber 1.

Full re­port on www.toi.in

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