Complying with the IT Rules 2021: Social media giants in August

Google (including YouTube), Facebook, Instagram, WhatsApp and Twitter have released their reports in compliance with Rule 4(1)(d) of the Information Technology (Guidelines for Intermediaries and Digital Media Ethics Code) Rules, 2021 for the month of August. The reports highlight some interesting facts and figures, and, again, a massive number of automated takedowns. You can read our analysis of the previous reports here and here, where we discussed the issue of non-publication of data on governmental removal orders.

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at

May be mistaken, but think a fundamental issue with the disclosure is the metric used by FB. They use a “Proactive Rate” which is % of content acted on that was proactively found. If we break this down, it will be calculated as Proactive Rate = content acted on that was proactively found / (content acted on that proactively found + content acted on that was reported). This will always be a high % because the scale of proactive moderation dwarfs user reporting. Crucially, this metric Doesn’t tell us anything about content that was NOT acted on. What the disclosure should have is a action rate = content acted on / (content that was proactively flagged + content that was reported).

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