The Indian authorities is to position streaming platforms corresponding to Netflix and Amazon Prime Video below the regulatory supervision of the nation’s ministry of knowledge and broadcasting in a transfer that observers imagine may presage a crackdown on content material deemed unsuitable – or politically unacceptable – by the ruling Bharatiya Janata get together.
Video streaming platforms are at the moment regulated by the Indian ministry of expertise, which doesn’t have a remit to control the content material on such platforms.
A switch of regulatory authority to the knowledge ministry would convey the likes of Netflix below the identical regime because the nation’s over-the-air broadcasters, with far higher restrictions round controversial points corresponding to gender equality, sexual violence, the caste system and spiritual persecution.
The transfer additionally applies to on-line information portals, which have been notably extra important of the federal government than conventional media.
Eight main streaming platforms energetic within the nation final 12 months signed as much as a self-regulation code in an try to go off additional government-imposed restrictions, with prohibitions of content material that disrespected the nationwide flag or was supposed to offend non secular sentiments, amongst different issues, however this did not garner official assist.
International streaming giants have poured cash into ventures within the nation, which, given the dimensions of the market, is seen as probably one of the crucial profitable worldwide markets for his or her companies.
Netflix has invested closely in unique content material within the nation over the past two years, whereas Disney+ Hotstar, Disney’s streaming enterprise in India, launched earlier this 12 months and, according to Media Partners Asia, is anticipated to generate US$900 million in revenues by 2025.