5 min read

One year of the Oversight Board, China mulls over new rules and Ofcom's CEO on what's ahead

The week in content moderation - edition #164
Melanie Dawes, CEO of Ofcom, the soon-to-be UK harms regulator, sitting in a chair on stage during a Websummit panel in 2021
Melanie Dawes, CEO of Ofcom, the soon-to-be UK harms regulator (Courtesy of WebSummit under Creative Commons 2.0 - colour and crop applied)

Hello and welcome to Everything in Moderation, your weekly exploration of news and analysis about online safety and content moderation. It's written by me, Ben Whitelaw.

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To new subscribers from Nextdoor, Terra.do, Trinity College Dublin, Cyacomb, Spotify and SWGFL as well as a dozen others, thanks for coming on board. If you came via the latest edition of the New_ Public newsletter, a special welcome to you.

This week's edition feels like we've come full circle in many respects and not in a good way: authoritarian countries taking regulatory inspiration from European speech laws, failures to takedown upskirting content and the age-old issue of review-bombing rearing its ugly head.

Keep an eye out for my read of the week. And thanks for reading — BW


New and emerging internet policy and online speech regulation

Draft regulation proposed by the Chinese internet watchdog could see each and every post reviewed by a moderator in a significant shift in the way online speech is managed.

Currently, a 2017 law — Provisions on the Management of Internet Post Comments Services — mandates that "comments under news information" are censored. But, according to MIT Technology Review, platforms will soon have to censor forum posts, replies and bullet chats on live videos as well. The new rules, which put more responsibility on content creators themselves, will mean that Chinese companies have to hire more people to carry out moderation and face warnings, fines and even suspension if they don't comply.

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