As the government promulgates the code of conduct for OTT platforms and makes it mandatory to segregate content in five age-appropriate categories, the discussion on web content management has regained some of its momentum.
Since the Tandav web group group including Ali Abbas Zafar and Saif Ali Khan were caught in the eye of the storm, there has been a great deal of interest in future measures planned by the government to control content. Especially after the epidemic, when it has become an important source of entertainment for many.
The trade expert Girish Johar said that the guidelines show that government is very focused on self-regulation. He also said that they are simply trying to monitor the content that comes with OTT platforms. What specific steps and agreements they plan for this should be clarified soon. He said that he hopes that none of them restrict the art and freedom of speech that is maintained. Having said that, it was necessary because there was a lot of cracking down and negligence and the government should have handled the matter.
As per the new rules, web platforms will need to automatically classify content based on five categories based on age – U (universal), U / A 7+, U / A 13+, U / A 16+, and A (adult). The grievance redressal system has also been made mandatory.
For Abhimanyu Singh who is the creator of State of Siege: 26/11, he said that the rating system is a good thing that has happened.
Singh said that It is easy for parents to decide what to watch and what not to watch. He said that he always felt that some kind of guidance needed to be done. It will also help developers decide what kind of content they want to make.
According to actor Maanvi Gagroo, unimaginable content on women and gender needs to be put under the scanner.
He said that the Freedom of speech and expression in any art form is important and as long as the rules remain within current laws and are not implicitly promoted and / or propaganda, he said that he thinks that they are alive. Although, they can review the regulations surrounding discriminatory content, sexual retaliation and categorical resilience, all are slightly overlooked.
Whatever the rules are, he goes on to say, “they need to be clearly defined and not open to multiple interpretations and at the same time be careful not to restrict the creator’s freedom of expression”.
Earlier this year, 17 popular OTT players including Netflix, Disney + Hotstar and Amazon Prime Video, had picked up a tool kit based on the Universal Self-regulation Code.
However, a recent study by LocalCircles, which was prepared using responses from more than 50,000 OTT users, revealed that 78% of respondents wanted more information about the OTT code and had little understanding of it.
The report also revealed that users are relying on a rating system and content type – a view that filmmaker Hansal Mehta also approves.
“One can measure the content and inform the audience whether it is nudity, sex, drug use or violence. One can put in categories, what else does one have to do with it, “Mehta said, adding,” I don’t understand the word ‘code of conduct’. Are we still in school? Where he tells a person how to behave. One can set self-regulatory guidelines, which people can follow. ”
According to commercial expert Joginder Tuteja, OTT as a link should be left untouched.
“It must be left to its makers. I don’t think there should be anything black or white, where it stays open for interpretation. We have that with the Censor board where things have been going on when it comes to the release of movies from theaters and there are a lot of issues and controversies, ”he said.
Tuteja also said that makers must have that kind of “honesty, thought process, and the need to be diligent in doing what they have to do”.
Actor Namit Das, who used to travel with OTT, feels like the platform has gained prominence because there were no rules.
Namit said that having said that, he said that now he thinks that hey have now reached a stage where it is full. It’s a different way. Now, all creators need to have some kind of responsibility whenever they put something on any platform because it goes through a very critical time, and anything that is improperly placed can hurt the feelings of certain people. One has to be careful about that, because this approach has become huge now. It’s no longer the way young people are, “explains Namit, calling OTT the commonplace .