EU Says Social Media Giants Must Remove ‘Extremist Content’ Within 1 Hour
The European Union chief executive has proposed a new law that aims to levy massive fines against Facebook, Google, and Twitter for not removing “extremist content” when requested to do so by the EU. The social media giants would have a little as an hour to remove the content deemed “extremist” by EU officials or face fines of 4 percent of their annual global turnover. In the case of Google, that would equate to $4 billion. The move takes place the same week that the EU adopted a copyright law that could ban memes.
“One hour is the decisive time window the greatest damage takes place,” Jean-Claude Juncker stated T A State of the Union before the European Parliament.
Last March, social media websites were given 3-months to remove the content. But EU officials have grown impatient with big tech, claiming the issue of visible “extremist content” has gotten worse.
Extremist content is any content flagged by authorities which incites extremist offenses or promotes extremist groups. Content that “teaches extremist ideals” is also lumped into the proposal.
The EU claims the world is in an online battle with extremist groups that they claim can act freely on social media platforms.
YouTube, a subsidiary of Google, says that their organization has a “shared the European Commission’s desire to react rapidly to terrorist content and keep violent extremism off our platforms.”
Social media giants tend to use artificial intelligence and robotic algorithms to root out extremist content. Last year, Google said that it would put 10,000 new personnel in a compliance department to help the situation. YouTube also claims that extremist content on its network has no more than an average of 10 views by the time it is flagged and deleted from the network.
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Government intervention is likely to make the situation worse.
Once government officials have a streamlined proxy control relationship with social media websites, greed could become a concern. The United States and countries around the globe are already dealing with stifled conservative news on the networks. More government control will only serve to lead to more government agenda implementation.
No one wants terrorists to garner publicity, however, the content is removed by the private companies.
When was the last time you saw an ISIS promotional video display on your Facebook newsfeed?
It is doubtful you ever have, and that’s the point. The EU is creating a problem as a way to gain more in-roads into content-censoring through means of financial intimidation.
This goes hand-in-hand with the EU’s newest copyright law that could force mandatory upload filtering of content. This would shut down the ability for people to upload memes. The new law also could force publishers to be fined for displaying news snippets.
This is not a good direction for any of us who care about free speech. The new technology that was supposed to make us a freer people has been nefariously compromised by corporations and governments.
Photo by Ludovic Toinel
Author: Jim Satney
PrepForThat’s Editor and lead writer for political, survival, and weather categories.