Civics: The Digital Berlin Wall Act 2: How the German Prototype for Online Censorship went Global

Jacob Mchangama:

Jacob Mchangama, director of Justitia and the Future of Free Speech project, says: “We are witnessing a deeply worrying trend where governments, both democratic but mostly authoritarian, are introducing measures to combat vaguely defined categories of hate speech and fake news by placing responsibility on the social media platforms for user content. The Network Enforcement law and its imitators create big incentives for social media companies to over-regulate online speech and risk pushing extremists towards platforms that are even harder to survey. Even if there are good reasons to counter online hate speech and disinformation, the approach prototyped by the German NetzDG law will exacerbate the decade-long global free speech recession which is part and parcel of the wider democratic recession.”