Bennett, Coleman and Company Ltd, owners of The Times of India and Economic Times amongst others, has forced its journalists to hand over the passwords for all their social media accounts.
According to Quartz, who has seen a copy of the contract, journalists can’t post their own stories or any news links.
The contract states: “The company may upload news or other material on the company User Account through any means, including automated upload streams, at its sole discretion, notwithstanding any termination of your contract with the company.
“The company shall be the owner of the access passwords, username and associated email address for the User Account, which shall be used by you on behalf of the Company to make posts. Company retains administration rights of the User Account, which shall be made accessible to the Company on demand.
"It is understood that sharing of such details of the User Account shall be an integral part of your contract with the Company and shall also be necessary for processing any settlement related to termination of such Contract.
It adds that journalists must start a company-authorised account, or to convert their personal accounts to company accounts. On these, the company will have access to log-ins and will be able to post any material they want without knowledge of the account owner.
The move comes as The Times of India has partnered with Huffington Post to launch an India edition of the Huff Po. It is so far unclear if the staff of the Huffington Post in India will be expected to sign the same contract.