Even as the government is in the process of finalising content regulation guidelines for the video streaming services amid controversy surrounding “objectionable” content and backlash across the country with multiple FIRs and PILs in the courts, a recent survey of OTT viewers has found that over 70% of the respondents do not approve of threats of intimidation, violence and death issued to artists, directors and producers of movies and shows.
The survey by LocalCircles, an Indian community social media platform, highlighted that 58% of the respondents said that such threats worried them as citizens of India quite a bit, while 15% said it “somewhat worried them”.
Only 15% of the respondents said that it doesn’t worry them at all.
Many of the members who participated in the discussion on the subject said that such threats should have no place in the society. “If they are not acted upon sternly and swiftly by law enforcement agencies, they will only increase over time,” the participants said.
According to many OTT users, the concern or grievance of an individual or a group of individuals or an organisation must be raised through appropriate pre-defined government channels.
Consumers currently seem to have little understanding of the content code or of regulation and 78% of the respondents said that they would like more information about the OTT code of conduct.
However, most of the members were also not in the favour of any government regulation, citing that the movies and shows on OTT platforms are a depiction of the society.
One area where OTT users agreed was the need for the code of regulation or conduct to define the content type in detail along with the rating.
“Some users cited the example of a few platforms where 18+ is accompanied with content description i.e. Nudity, Language, Violence, etc. This will permit certain users to stay away from the content type they would rather not watch,” LocalCircle said in its report.
The survey also highlights that the consumers use OTT platforms for the choice and convenience (50%), and high-quality content (31%). Also, over 76% of users have subscriptions of two or more platforms, including 30% with four or more subscriptions.
The survey is based on over 50,000 responses from close to 8,500 OTT viewers across 311 districts of India. Almost 66% respondents were men, while 34% respondents were women; 59% respondents were from tier I cities, 24% from tier II and 17% respondents were from tier III, IV and rural districts.