Israel aligns with the European Union and intends to apply regulation to social networks, which suffer from a lack of enforcement and are therefore fertile ground for acts of online bullying, the publication of words of hatred, abomination and racism, and the spread of fake news.
Regulation of social networks soon in Israel?, photo: Reuters
Outgoing Minister of Communications Yoaz Handel adopted the recommendations of the committee for the regulation of social networks operating in Israel, which was established in October 2001. According to the committee's recommendations, legal responsibility will be imposed on the online platforms, and they will be obliged by law to deal with offensive content.
The platforms in question are those of Meta (Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp), Tiktok, Twitter and Google.
The union is already working with a regular plan.
Meta, photo: I.P
However, this is an initial proposal that the next Minister of Communications will have to continue to initiate.
If he sees fit to advance the regulation, it will take several months to pass such legislation.
The European Union, as mentioned, has already passed the legislation and the Israeli Ministry of Communications is angry about it.
Will the next minister regulate the regulation?
Handel, photo: Oren Ben Hakon
In addition to the application of legal responsibility, among the recommendations received by the Ministry of Communications are the obligation for the platforms to establish and operate an online hotline for reporting illegal and offensive content, such as sexual offenses, defamation, invasion of privacy, threats, incitement to violence, incitement to terrorism and the distribution of intimate photos or videos and content which constitute bullying towards children - and handle these reports;
Accreditation of reporters who will assist in dealing with these contents;
Authorizing the courts to issue orders to remove illegal content and requiring the platforms to establish a representative office in Israel, which includes a legal representative.
On behalf of Minister Handel, it was reported that "the State of Israel is dealing with ethical and regulatory questions regarding social networks. This is an online space that has no regulation, and negative and harmful social phenomena have grown in it. The step we are taking today brings us closer to a more protected and safer online space while maintaining maximum freedom of expression."
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