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PTA struggles to regulate social media content: president

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ISLAMABAD: Pakistan Telecommunications Authority (PTA) Chairman Major General (right) Amir Azeem Bajwa hoped the social media giants would not leave Pakistan because this market was growing at a faster pace. fast.

“The Pakistani market is among the top 10 in the world and we want to use it for the good of all. Social media companies must also obey our laws, ”the PTA chairman said during a briefing to reporters on the general state of the telecommunications industry, focusing on the regulatory framework here on Monday.

Asked about the prevalence of the dark web, the PTA chairman responded that this is a global challenge and there are ways to address it. He said the PTA was working on it to resolve this issue. He said the regulator is struggling to regulate content as all social media platforms are hosted outside of Pakistan.

Presentations were made by the heads of various divisions and PTA officials said that the lack of engagement of social media platforms regarding blasphemous and sectarian content, decency and immorality, and defamatory content, did not is also not taken into account in the majority of cases.

Different respective wing chiefs of the PTA gave a media briefing and said that the response of the social media platforms was generally in line with their own community guidelines and not in accordance with Pakistan’s laws. In accordance with the law, the PTA has a responsibility to protect citizens from harm online in accordance with its local laws and societal standards.

The president of the PTA was asked about issues related to the quality of telecommunications services in the country. Media were told that the PTA Complaints Management System (CMS) was launched in 2010 and upgraded in 2020. From November 2018 to September 2021, 480,865 public complaints were received. by the PTA and 238,656 were resolved.

The PTA also launched an Automated Lost and Stolen Device System (LSDS) to block lost, stolen and ripped cell phones in April 2021, and over 9,963 block / unblock requests were received in the system, and 9,409 IMEI were blocked and 554 were restored. However, the president of the PTA acknowledged that IMEI cloning was a challenge that must be eradicated.

“Some people in the local markets are trying to replace IMEI numbers and we have come up with methods to block this, but there is a need to educate the general public to stay away from such practices as they would be the ultimate losers. if their phones are blocked, ”he added.

He also referred to the new measures taken to improve the coverage area and the quality of telephony and broadband services, but added that mobile phone companies also had limitations as Pakistan was a low-end market, where the average revenue per user (APRU) was between 200 rupees. and Rs250.

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