“Close All Your Youtube Channels” – Strict Order From Government

Written by Dhiwaharan Published on Feb 22, 2023 | 08:30 AM IST | 462

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“Close your existing YouTube channels and do not start one hereafter if you are working for the government of Kerala” an order provided by The Kerala government said. The Kerala government has recently issued a controversial order that prohibits government employees from having YouTube channels or posting videos that could financially benefit them. The order, which was released on February 3, 2023, also limits the number of subscribers government employees are allowed to have. The directive, which was issued by RS Rusi, deputy secretary in the Labour and Skills department, claims that government employees’ individual freedom to use the internet and social media does not extend to earning money from YouTube channels.

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The Kerala Government Employees Conduct Rules of 1960 prohibit government employees from activities that could be seen as violations of the code. Therefore, the order concludes that it is not possible to grant permission to government employees to start a YouTube channel. This order has already affected a firefighter who was denied permission to create a YouTube channel, and existing government employees with YouTube channels have been asked to close their accounts.

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According to The New Indian Express, the government’s order aims to reduce the amount of time that government employees spend on social media. The move is understandable, given the detrimental impact that excessive social media usage can have on productivity and work quality. However, the order seems to be motivated more by financial concerns than by a desire to improve employees’ work efficiency.

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The order has sparked controversy among the public, with many claiming that it infringes on employees’ individual rights and freedom of expression. Moreover, the directive appears to be overly broad and lacks clarity in terms of its scope and enforcement. For instance, it is unclear how the government will monitor government employees’ YouTube activities, and what specific actions will be taken against those who violate the order.

The government’s move follows a similar order issued by the Karnataka government in 2021, which prohibited government employees from posting views and opinions on social media that could embarrass the government. The Karnataka government’s order also warned that disciplinary action would be taken against officials who post photos, opinions or posts that could cause embarrassment to the government. Additionally, in an earlier circular, the government had instructed its employees to refrain from approaching the media to express dissent from the state administration.

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While these orders may seem reasonable in light of concerns about social media usage and employee conduct, they also raise important questions about individual rights and freedom of expression. The government must ensure that its orders do not infringe on employees’ fundamental rights, and that they are enforced in a manner that is consistent, transparent, and fair.

The Kerala government’s recent order prohibiting government employees from having YouTube channels or earning money from them has sparked controversy and raised important questions about individual rights and freedom of expression. While it is understandable that the government is concerned about excessive social media usage, its orders must be clear, consistent, and fair, and must not infringe on employees’ fundamental rights.

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