New UN report provides companies with roadmap for tackling online hate according to human rights law

Author: Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights, Published on: 23 October 2019

"Governments and Internet companies fail to meet challenges of online hate – UN expert", 21 Oct 2019

In a landmark report...the UN’s monitor for freedom of expression calls on governments and companies to move away from standardless policies and inconsistent enforcement, and to align their laws and practices against ‘hate speech’ with international human rights law. “The prevalence of online hate poses challenges to everyone, first and foremost the marginalised individuals who are its principal targets,” said David Kaye, the UN Special Rapporteur on freedom of opinion and expression, in the report to be presented to the UN General Assembly... “Governments and the public have legitimate concerns about online hate...but new laws that impose liability on companies are failing basic standards, increasing the power of those same private actors over public norms... “Companies likewise are not taking seriously their responsibilities to respect human rights,” he said. “It is on their platforms where hateful content spreads, spurred on by a business model and algorithmic tools that value attention and virality. They have massive impact on human rights and yet all fail to articulate policies rooted in human rights law, as the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights call upon them to do.” Kaye’s report provides companies with a roadmap for tackling online hate according to basic principles of human rights law...

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