Yesterday the Government launched a new open consultation on Internet Safety in the form of its new Internet Safety Strategy green paper and, whilst we half expected the paper to reiterate the usual approach of essentially blaming ISPs and technology companies (especially social media) for the ills of the Internet , the paper makes a refreshing read.
Don’t get us wrong, the Government is still keen to point out the growing role of tech companies,especially those in social media, with regards to filtering, monitoring and removing harmful content (which we completely agree with) but it has put much more focus on the need for ongoing education, support and a truly collaborative approach involving industry to formulate a successful strategy.
The key actions of the green paper are:
- A new social media code of practice to see a joined-up approach to remove or address bullying, intimidating or humiliating online content
- An industry-wide levy so social media companies and communication service providers contribute to raise awareness and counter internet harms
- An annual internet safety transparency report to show progress on addressing abusive and harmful content and conduct
- And support for tech and digital startups to think safety first – ensuring that necessary safety features are built into apps and products from the very start