France plans internet ombudsman to safeguard free speech

France is considering appointing an official internet ombudsman to regulate complaints about online material in order to prevent excessive censorship and preserve free speech. A bill establishing a “content qualification assessment procedure” has been tabled in the French Senate and the initiative was debated last week at a high level meeting attended by senators and judges as well as policy officers from Google and Twitter. The aim is to provide a simple procedure that will support firms operating online who are uncertain of their legal liabilities and to prevent over-zealous removal or censorship of material merely because it is the subject of a complaint. It could be copied by other European jurisdictions.

Country: France

Domains: IG

Stakeholder: Government

Tags: Internet Governance, France, freedom of expression, internet ombudsman

Posted on Monday 19 December 2016

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