Discover and read the best of Twitter Threads about #onlineharms

Most recents (19)

On 19 Nov there was a coordinated campaign of over 300 tweets, comprised of accounts which look genuine and some which seem to be bots.

Who initiated this campaign and who deployed these accounts to push for online censorship?
This is a thread containing some information, some questions, and not many firm answers. The campaign was clumsy enough to be spotted, and it was interestingly timed.
Also 19 Nov, MP Damian Collins took part in a debate about #OnlineHarms

Read 8 tweets
On the face of it, this is welcome news:

@Google are introducing e2e encryptions for Android RCS messaging…
This is announced, coincidentally I am sure, during a debate on #onlineharms in the Commons.

In the UK, there is pressure for the Government to ban or “licence” e2e encryption of personal messages as @WebDevLaw wrote on our blog last week…
Many companies are moving towards encrypting chat services. Government and MPs need to ask themselves why that is.

So, why is the market moving towards very secure messaging apps?
Read 5 tweets
Out of meeting with digital minister @cj_dinenage and tech cos on #onlineharms and transparency.
A few thoughts on this: first, transparency is the easy bit, we all agree we need evidence.
However, making transparency generate comparability is really hard, or in practice impossible. Platforms are different, practices are different, users are different.
Read 11 tweets
The #OnlineHarms proposal seems to be centred around four core fallacies:
Fallacy 1: the "#WildWestWeb" fallacy, that current law does not apply to online behaviour and speech.

It does, and, as the Law Commission found, there are situations in which online speech is regulated in a way that offline speech is not.
Fallacy 2: that computer systems operated by private companies, to which limited access is granted on a discretionary basis, are "public spaces".

Hard to know where to start with this one.
Read 7 tweets
#jail4journalists is back:

The briefing points to the Official Secrets review by @Law_Commission which was considering making it illegal to receive or handle leaked docs…
@Law_Commission So that's vague I grant you. But criminalising journalism ("updating the Official Secrets Act for the digital age") was the heart of that review.
Read 5 tweets
I met @RiotChat today, to talk about the challenges of being open source, federated, secure *and* thinking about content issues.

They think these goals are compatible, and can be done better than in closed, centralised environments.

This is very interesting! #onlineharms
@RiotChat The next government is very likely to carry on with an #onlineharms Bill. They'll focus on the existing players and problems: it's incredibly important that the Bill does not make other approaches more difficult.
@RiotChat Equally, though, decentralised approaches mean a potential diversity of content standards. What can be or is shared or accessed can vary between nodes. What different people or servers believe is acceptable is naturally different.
Read 4 tweets
Safety by design panel now. #UKIGF19
Antonia Bayly from @DCMS says safety by design is a key approach #UKIGF19
@DCMS David Hunter from CRISP says safety so far has been reactive #UKIGF19
Read 13 tweets
Online Harms Bill in the Queen's Speech, notes extracted on ORG Wiki:… #onlineharms #queensspeech
key points include: “We will publish draft legislation for pre-legislative scrutiny.” – (“we're unsure if this is going to work or prove to be very controversial”)
“Our public consultation on this has closed and we are analysing the responses and considering the issues raised. We are working closely with a variety of stakeholders, including technology companies and civil society groups, to understand their views.”
Read 4 tweets
The Internet: Broken or About to be Broken? @cyberleagle opens #SCLConf2019
Well, it’s broken. And the list of reasons why it’s broken is pretty endless. Even @timberners_lee thinks so! But the Internet is still a good and liberating thing overall - there is probably more good than bad
It would be foolish to think that state-defined social good can be achieved through the manipulation of technology or regulation for that matter. Legislation which mandates that technology regulates freedom of expression to achieve such aim is dangerous
Read 11 tweets
Now @davidakaye explains how private surveillance tech needs to be restricted #ORGCon2019 Image
Centralisation of Internet is causing problems of censorship says @davidakaye #ORGCon2019
Also gives huge authority to private companies to manage and adjudicate over public spaces #ORGCon2019
Read 22 tweets
Just kicking off at the @computersandlaw #digitalmedia law masterclass - first up, #TV, #tech and regulation
Interesting time seeing traditional broadcasters move into the streaming space - is it the beginning of the end of linear broadcast TV as we know it!? 🎵 Streaming killed the TV star 🎵
Broadcast TV still accounts for 71% of viewing time - but more subscriptions to streaming services than pay-TV
Read 44 tweets
Stinging rebuke from @Ofcom to the BBC for materially misleading audience with an unsourced statistic on literacy in Scotland.

Basic error of fact, compounded by "deeply unsatisfactory" follow-up.

Source:… Image
The error was in the run-up to the 2017 election.

Ofcom points out importance of dealing better with complaints during pre-election and pre-referendum periods.

Given the possibility of #PeoplesVote and #Indyref2, not to mention EU elex (and UK?), that's timely. Image
On timeliness, though: this concerned a breach committed +two years+ ago.

Bear that in mind in the discussion on the UK White Paper on #onlineharms. Enforcing the rules to this standard of evidence is not a quick process. Image
Read 3 tweets
So @DCMS_SecOfState wrote to @IpsoNews @NUJofficial @EditorsUK to tell them that uK press would be exempted from regulation for #onlineharms

*This is not true*—or only partly true—or impossible in practice. Let me explain why.…
1 Content from media will be posted to social media. When it arrives on FB, Twitter, etc, it becomes the problem of the regulated social media platform.

Imagine that a @DailyMailUK article is posted on Facebook, where it attracts controversial debate.
2 Imagine the controversial debate on FB strays into racist or sexist remarks that are now regulated as a "risk of harm".

What now does FB do to reduce the risk of harm?

How does FB treat other posts of this @DailyMailUK article to FB?
Read 9 tweets
Official EU Agencies Falsely Report More Than 550 URLs as Terrorist Content

Government agencies reporting material for removal without prior authorisation, oversight.…
We have this in the UK btw. It's called CTIRU, has filed over 250,000 removal requests without prior authorisation:…
Why should we trust the government #onlineharms White Paper, suggesting outsourcing legal judgments to private companies, when it can't get this stuff right itself?

Governments give the message they don't care about due process, accuracy, oversight, accountability, free speech.
Read 3 tweets
The government trailed #onlineharms with a call to ensure for the:

"Same rules online as Offline"

So, how is the Online Harms White Paper doing with that?
1 Government wants a kind of content banned.

Offline: a law must be passed to make the content unlawful
Online: a regulator asks a company to ban it.

2 A post maybe violates the rules

Offline: somebody needs to take you to court
Online: a company comes along and takes it down

Read 5 tweets
A few thoughts on the #OnlineHarms White Paper. It has a "vision" of a "A free, open and secure internet [and] Freedom of expression online" "where companies take effective steps to keep their users safe".

In 102 pages how free expression will be protected is not explained.
There is a list of harms: "Harms with a clear definition" and "Harms with a less clear definition". These are roughly "illegal" versus "legal but unwanted". (p31)

Content may be legal and harmful yet will remain legal to publish unless you are a platform. Why?
Probably because it's very difficult to establish the harm from the content, or it would be contentious to ban that content.

This should signal the complexity and difficulty in balancing free expression and content takedown. This is not discussed.
Read 14 tweets
Reading the UK government's White Paper on #OnlineHarms.

First bit of progress: the only mentions of "fake news" are in reference to the DCMS committee report of the same name.

Nice to see that useless phrase abandoned.…
Here's the full list of harms (p. 31).

Note references to cyberbullying, trolling, and disinformation. Image
Bit of a bizarre segue from disinformation to filter bubbles in the executive summary.

Both are problems, but filter bubbles are one small part of the disinfo problem, and disinfo is one small part of the filter-bubble problem. Image
Read 9 tweets
Working my way through today's #onlineharms White Paper. The Tories' intention to regulate the internet was a major red flag in their 2017 election manifesto. Obviously the discourse has changed since then, but we'll see if they've learned the required lessons.
The report's fairly unequivocal in its presentation of the Russian Government as a foreign policy and cyber-security threat. We've heard ministers state as much for some time, but it's always striking to see it presented so starkly.
The @guardian gets an unexpected feature too for their broad-spectrum research into targeted abuse of their writers. Again, it's something we've all know for a while, but good to see it featuring in such a report.
Read 15 tweets
The "initial" list of online harms. " design, neither exhaustive nor fixed. A static list could prevent swift regulatory action to address new forms of online harm, new technologies, content and new online activities." #onlineharms
Guess they haven't been reading the right blogs.…
And to think I warned of this 7 years ago...…
Read 4 tweets

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