EU Creates Hate Speech Code in Conjunction with Facebook, Microsoft, Twitter, and YouTube

European Commission

The European Commission has established a code of conduct which will be aimed at fighting and combating hate speech. The organization has begun the project in partnership with some of the biggest technology companies in the world.

The four big tech companies involved in the deal are Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and Microsoft. The four are all participating in the creation of the code which will be exclusively targeting hate speech on the Internet. It will also act to work against racism and xenophobia cases in the European region. The efforts to tackle these vices at the moment were being slowed down by the various and different laws and regulations that have been seen in the different countries across the region. Hence, the code will try to navigate through those laws so as to get justice.

The code will need the social media networks which have signed up to the code to take immediate action once they receive a valid notification on their networks.

The slim document will not be legally binding for the companies involved in the partnership. However, their policies are already included and covered by the EU laws and regulations that they already enforce at the moment. The code will work to establish a public commitment for the Internet firms. The responsibility will also include a need to review and remove the majority of all the valid notifications that they will receive so as to combat hate speech on the networks effectively. It will also make it easier for the law enforcement agencies to be able to notify any of the companies involved in the hate speech on their networks.

The EU Commissioner for Justice, Consumers and Gender Equality, Vera Jourova, was at the forefront of the code creation, and she put them in the same breath with what happened in Paris and Brussels. She said that the recent terrorist attacks in these two cities had shown how it was vital that the relevant agencies deal with online hate speech that is illegal. She said. Unfortunately, social media was one of the ways that terrorist groups were targeting youths and radicalizing them.

According to the Code hate speech has a narrow definition, being defined as “all conduct publicly inciting to violence or hatred directed against a group of persons or a member of such a group defined by reference to race, color, region, descent or national or ethnic origin.”

The four Internet companies involved in this showed that it was truly important. The public policy and government relations director at Google, Lie Jinius said that the corporation was wholly and truly committed to giving people access to various modes of information through their services, but have always condoned the use of hate speech on their networks. He said that he was pleased that they were in cohorts with the EU to work out a way to boot out hate speech from the Internet.

Head of Global Policy Management at Facebook, Monica Bickert also said that the company, which has the highest number of users on any social media network, worked hard to give people a balance and a real time on the network. According to the Community Standards of Facebook, there is no hate speech allowed, she said.

Karen White, the Head of Public Policy for Europe at Twitter stated that any offensive conduct was not tolerated on Twitter, and they would continue to look for ways and explore methods they could totally remove it from the network through partnerships with its peers in the industry.