Australia: A push to make social media companies liable in defamation is great for newspapers and lawyers, but not you – Michael Douglas

28 11 2019

At his Wednesday 20 November 2019 address to the National Press Club, Attorney-General Christian Porter said the federal government is pursuing “immediate” defamation law reform. The announcement seemed a bit odd, as defamation is a subject for state and territory governments to legislate on. A NSW-led law reform process has been ongoing for years. Read the rest of this entry »





Ireland: The Government’s plans for a digital safety commissioner proceed apace – Eoin O’Dell

23 11 2019

In my earlier post on the demise of the UK’s current age-verification plans for online porn – and what that might mean for Ireland’s proposed Digital Safety Commissioner, I noted that long-standing Irish Government policy is to establish such a Commissioner, and that the current timetable is that it is intended to bring forward the necessary legislation before the end of the year. Read the rest of this entry »





Facebook’s not a threat to the UK election – Anamaria Dutceac Segesten,

22 11 2019

The Cambridge Analytica scandal of March 2018 changed the status of Facebook forever. The revelation that a political consultancy had illicitly gained access to the data of millions of Facebook users forced the company to change its approach to privacy, including its rules and algorithms. Read the rest of this entry »





Analysis shows horrifying extent of abuse sent to women MPs via Twitter – Susan Watson

16 11 2019

The approach of a rare December election in the UK has many campaigners feeling chills. What misery awaits them on the dark, cold streets as they try to convince voters to support their party? My preliminary research reveals that the women who bid for political office over the next six weeks have more to worry about than sore feet and aggressive dogs. Read the rest of this entry »





Twitter’s ban on political ads does change the game in one – Liam Mcloughlin

6 11 2019

Twitter has announced that it is banning paid-for political adverts, just as the UK enters a general election, saying that the reach of political messages “should be earned, not bought”. Read the rest of this entry »





The fightback against Facebook is getting stronger – Leighton Andrews

12 10 2019

Facebook leader Mark Zuckerberg recently took the unusual step of visiting lawmakers in Washington, including President Donald Trump in the White House. The reason? Congress’s anti-trust sub-committee has started demanding documents from Facebook and other big tech firms. It’s part of the committee’s investigation into whether dominant tech firms are acting anti-competitively. And Zuckerberg’s trip suggests the company is worried. Read the rest of this entry »





ECJ confirms territorial limitations of ‘the right to be forgotten’ – Iain Wilson and Elisabeth Mason

3 10 2019

On 24 September 2019, whilst the country was focused on the United Kingdom Supreme Court as it ruled that the prorogation of the UK parliament was unlawful, the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU or ECJ), handed down judgment in Google LLC, successor in law to Google Inc. v Commission nationale de l’informatique et des libertés (CNIL), C‑507/17, effectively a sequel to the landmark data protection ‘Google Spain’ decision in May 2014. Read the rest of this entry »





Disinfo Wars: a taxonomy of information warfare – Hossein Derakhshan

29 09 2019

In the Information Disorder report for Council of Europe (2017), Claire Wardle and I identified three types of bad-information (mis-, dis-, and malinformation), three phases (creation, (re)production, distribution), and three elements (agent, message, interpreter) to information disorder. Read the rest of this entry »





Regulating Facebook: a process, not an event – Leighton Andrews

28 09 2019

The Governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, recently flew half-way across the world to meet Mark Zuckerberg. While the Bank of England is being rather coy about what was discussed, a number of recent speeches by the Governor have raised questions about Facebook’s move into crypto-currency with its plans for its Libra system. Read the rest of this entry »





Users (and their bias) are key to fighting fake news on Facebook: AI isn’t smart enough yet – Gianluca Demartini

24 09 2019

The information we encounter online everyday can be misleading, incomplete or fabricated. Being exposed to “fake news” on social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter can influence our thoughts and decisions. We’ve already seen misinformation interfere with elections in the United States. Read the rest of this entry »