Guardian: Make Facebook liable for content, says report on UK election intimidation.
Theresa May should consider the introduction of two new laws to deter the intimidation of MPs during elections and force social media firms to monitor illegal content, an influential committee has said.
The independent Committee on Standards in Public Life, which advises the prime minister on ethics, has called for the introduction within a year of a new specific offence in electoral law to halt widespread abuse when voters go to the polls.
The watchdog will recommend another law to shift the liability for illegal content on to social media firms such as Facebook and Google, a legal change which will be easier once Britain leaves the European Union.
Both changes form part of the hard-hitting conclusions of an inquiry into intimidation experienced by parliamentary candidates in this year’s election campaign.
Other recommendations include:
- Social media firms should make decisions quickly to take down intimidatory content.
- Political parties should, by December 2018, draw up a joint code of conduct on intimidatory behaviour during election campaigns.
- The National Police Chiefs’ Council should ensure that police are trained to investigate offences committed through social media.
- Ministers should bring forward rules so that council candidates will no longer be required to release their home addresses.