The UK has proposed a set of measures to regulate the internet by obliging tech giants to ‘protect’ users from ‘harmful’ content, with a watchdog blocking inappropriate websites and slapping fines on those refusing to cooperate.
The proposals, outlined in a white paper by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, call for creating a new, independent watchdog (or granting sweeping powers to an existing one, like Ofcom) to monitor online traffic and, if necessary, to block access to websites.
Besides eying “substantial” fines for non-compliance, lawmakers also want to see annual transparency reports from tech companies, and a full itinerary on how they addressed the dissemination of any harmful content. The regulator will also be empowered to hold individual executives of technology firms responsible if they fail to comply.
The new regulations, proposed on Monday, are needed to battle rising concerns over the growth of violent content and disinform