With a number of shows on online streaming platforms having violence, nudity and strong language, about 57 percent of people in India now think censorship is required for over-the-top (OTT) platforms such as Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hotstar and Voot, according to a new survey by YouGov. While 27 percent of those surveyed think censorship is not required for these platforms, 16 percent are unsure of it.
Most people in the country feel a lot of offensive content unsuitable for public viewing is being created nowadays and hence should be censored, the survey showed.
The older age cohorts are more likely to affirm to content regulation than the younger ones.
Among all the age groups, GenX are most likely to say censorship is needed while GenZ are least likely to say so.
When asked about the likely effects of content regulation for online streaming platforms, close to half (47 percent) said they feel better quality content will be created as well as watched by people due to this change.
However, some people feel otherwise and hint at a gloomy outcome. They think piracy and illegal downloading will increase and about 30 percent think the quality of content will suffer due to this.
When it comes to the possible impact on viewership, people in India are equally divided.
Nearly 30 percent think censorship will lead to an increase in viewership on online streaming platforms but almost as many think the opposite.
The survey is based on responses from over 1,000 adults in India.
The Indian government is already considering the regulation of OTT platforms like Netflix, Hotstar, and Amazon Prime Video. The Supreme Court earlier this year directed the Centre to regulate the content featured on OTT media platform.
The research by YouGov showed that in general, an overwhelming majority of Indians support some form of content censorship.
Nine in 10 said content – either on TV, films or online, should be regulated by the government, either always or sometime.
Men are more likely than women to say they want content to be regulated always, the findings showed.