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Tech giants to comply with EU hate speech rules

2016-06-01 01:31 by


Internet giants Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Microsoft have agreed to comply with new European regulations which aim to stop racist, violent and illegal content from going viral.

Under the rules, the companies will have to review "hateful" content within 24 hours, and if necessary, to remove it.

"The recent terror attacks have reminded us of the urgent need to address illegal online hate speech," Vera Jourova, EU Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality, said in a press release. "Social media is unfortunately one of the tools that terrorist groups use to radicalize young people and racists use to spread violence and hatred. This agreement is an important step forward to ensure that the Internet remains a place of free and democratic expression, where European values and laws are respected."

Of course, this news raises concerns of a potential censorship in social media. Right groups, such as European Digital Rights (EDRi), a Brussels-based advocacy group, criticized the regulations:

"In short, the 'code of conduct' downgrades the law to a second-class status, behind the 'leading role' of private companies that are being asked to arbitrarily implement their terms of service. This process, established outside an accountable democratic framework, exploits unclear liability rules for companies. It also creates serious risks for freedom of expression as legal but controversial content may well be deleted as a result of this voluntary and unaccountable take down mechanism."

Read more -here-


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