Sunday, February 17, 2013

Is Media Promoting Soft Porn In India?

We have been witnessing a trend where online media and websites in India have been accused of promoting soft pornography at their platforms. The cyber law of India clearly prohibits such display of soft porn in India yet till now we have not witnessed any compliant or court case against such platforms.

We recently received an e-mail from Supreeth Sudhakaran informing us about the possible cyber law violation by the English website of the Bhaskar Group. We have forwarded the same to Perry4Law’s Techno Legal Base (PTLB), the leading techno legal segment of law firm Perry4Law.

According to Supreeth he recently visited the English website of the Bhaskar Group and found that they have been promoting a nude calendar under the claims that it is artistic and that they are launching it in India.

The website has neither blurred the image nor creatively cropped it, says Supreeth. When he contacted their editors, he did not receive any response. Now Supreeth wonders whether the website in question violates any law of India.

The cyber law due diligence for press and media in India is well known and a failure to observe the same could result in criminal liabilities. According to Praveen Dalal, managing partner of Perry4Law and leading techno legal expert of Asia, a single such episode can attract Civil and Criminal Liabilities on the part of those involved in the making, uploading, publication and circulation of the same in paper and electronic form. The Cyber Law of India prescribes stringent Due Diligence Requirements that paper based and electronic publishers must follow. If they do not follow Cyber Due Diligence, they can be Criminally Prosecuted by the Government, opines Praveen Dalal.

The legal position in this regard is very clear and websites and media platforms must keep the cyber law due diligence requirements in mind.