Europe’s Commissioner for Justice, Consumer and Gender Equality Vera Jourova, while presenting the results of the 3rd edition of Code of Conduct on countering illegal online hate speech on Friday, said the time of uncontrolled work for the technology giants on the European digital market is over.
Jourova urged Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Google to increase their efforts in improving feedback to Internet users on how they handle illegal content.
“I want everyone to understand that the time of fast-moving big technological companies without any supervision or control has come to an end. The fact that our collaborative approach on illegal hate speech brings good results does not mean that the Commission wants to give a free pass to the tech giant. We continue to monitor them closely and always consider additional measures,” said Jurova.
A Code of Conduct on countering illegal online hate speech, an initiative launched by the European Commission in 2016, is aimed at combating the spread of illegal online hate speech speech and speech inciting violence and terrorism in Europe.
The non-binding document was signed by major tech giants including Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Microsoft and Instagram, and urges companies to remove illegal hate speech without a court order within 24 hours.
According to the last report, the rate of removal of online hate speech has increased to 70% in 2017 from 28% in 2016.
In September 2017, the Commission issued special guidelines for digital companies to follow which recommended web companies to appoint a dedicated point of contact and asked them to invest in technologies that can automatically detect potentially illegal posts and speech.