hide message

Hello! Welcome to the Resource Centre.

We hope you find our free tools and resources useful. Did you know we also work directly with community advocates, providing them with the skills and resources to document corporate human rights abuses and effectively communicate with business?

This is only possible through generous donations from people like you.

Please consider supporting our work.

Thank you,
Phil Bloomer, Executive Director

Donate now hide message

You are being redirected to the story the piece of content is found in so you can read it in context. Please click the following link if you are not automatically redirected within a couple seconds:
en/eu-commission-says-internet-cos-must-do-more-against-extremist-material-or-face-legislation#c171012

Commentary: EU should not make platforms the judges of free speech

Author: Nick Wallace, EU Observer, Published on: 29 March 2018

[A] recent threat by the European Commission to hold platforms responsible for their users' posts [c]ould [...] push... platforms to remove anything they are unsure about before any court has ruled it illegal...

On 1 March, the commission issued a recommendation [...] demanding that online platforms take "proactive measures" to remove all varieties of illegal content posted by users...

The commission threatened regulation if platforms do not comply.

But increasing platforms' liability would drastically alter the effects of the different national laws on free speech.

The threat of fines, combined with the grey areas inherent to laws limiting what people can say, would push platforms to remove content whenever in doubt, even where a court might let it remain online...

Naturally, platforms should comply with court orders and be punished when they do not, but to safeguard free speech, claims of hate speech, illegally "offensive" messages, or similar allegations should be judged in court on a case-by-case basis.

If the EU makes platforms liable for what their users post, then throughout Europe, the threat of fines will pressure platforms to delete all dubious content, [...] limiting opportunities to challenge allegations of hate speech, and stifling public debate.

Read the full post here