Startups and entrepreneurs are driving change and development all over India. This is prominently visible in the IT and online services sector. By building companies which foster innovation and utility online services are making everyday life simpler, efficient and more enjoyable. Every segment of our nation’s society and industry stands to benefit by being connected to an open Internet.

While legal regulation is urgently required in several areas of internet policy in India there is a need to recognise its impact on innovation. We have historically seen that permission based systems such as those which require prior licensing only promote red tape and overheads. We believe that prior licensing or registration denies Indians an opportunity to have unbiased access to the solutions that our talented entrepreneurs are devising.

Another negative effect of local registration requirements or onerous legal compliances is the potential for preventing access to global web services. Often termed as the fragmentation of the internet, this will prevent the best of the web from being accessed in India. We believe this will set back innovation in India and also prevent users from accessing the best of the global web.

The chilling effects on online content by overbroad intellectual property laws is well documented. Even today, efforts are made through john doe injunctions to block entire web services through nebulous legal claims. Even our existing legal provisions for intermediary liability do not incorporate necessary safeguards. We believe that the enforcement of intellectual property rights should be limited to persons who willfully engage in piracy and counterfeiting rather than platforms and services.

After sale users have modified devices, software and content for years. This is the inherent to the very process of innovation in which people tinker, experiment and improve. We believe the right to modify devices should firmly rest with users for purposes such as scientific study and personal use.

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