Critical Analysis on the Liability of Internet Intermediaries in India

Tellmy Jolly and Sneha Goud
Alliance University, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India

Volume II – Issue I, 2020

Online intermediaries facilitate the transfer of information across the web. The flow of data has resulted in many issues involving privacy concerns such as leakage of personal data, defamation, copyrights infringement, fake news etc. The Information Technology Act, 2000 and the Draft Intermediary Guideline Rules, 2018 provides a regulatory framework for managing the rights and liabilities of Internet intermediaries in India. However, these laws seem inadequate to deal with the concerns that have arisen as a result of the rapid advances in technology and re-shaping of the internet in this global era. This paper gives an analysis on intermediary liability by maintaining a balance between privacy rights and freedom of speech and expression. Further, the paper also deals with the landmark decisions of the Supreme court in deciding the intermediary liability. Further, it also examines the reasons and suggestions for preventing fake news and also deals with social media responsibility with respect to Face Book and WhatsApp. The paper concludes by offering a few suggestions that can be adopted to determine the scope and liability of internet intermediaries.

Keywords: Intermediary, Liability, India, Information Technology Act, 2000.


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