Das ka Dum with Dr Bhaskar Das: Given that mobile-driven media can offer a platform for the spread fake news and rumours, would you say the government isn’t incorrect in imposing restrictions on internet access?

10 Jan,2020

This is a provocative question, and for once, he says: I have no answer to that. So, without further ado, Das ka Dum by Dr Bhaskar Das

 

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Q. Given that mobile-driven media can offer a platform for the spread fake news and all sorts of misinformation and rumours, as a veteran media professional, would you say the government isn’t incorrect in imposing restrictions on internet access?

 

A. In your question there are two separate issues viz 1) restriction on internet and 2) spread of fake news. I am not denying that there is a connection between the two though. Internet is a multi-edged sword. It can benefit and harm simultaneously , depending on who is using it for what agenda. Quite often, liberty and licence are conflated but that results in abusive use. So responsible restrictions are important but the million dollar question is what is responsible restriction. I have no answer to that. In the new gig economy, new and unimaginable developments would continue to surprise us and there is no correct answer. Society would create its own answers. It can’t be delivered in a Q&A format.

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