WS 9: Content moderation on the Internet infrastructure level – Where does censorship begin?
¶ 1 Leave a comment on paragraph 1 0 Rapporteur: Ilona Stadnik, Geneva Internet Platform
- ¶ 2 Leave a comment on paragraph 2 0
- The DSA is aimed at modernising relevant rules and limiting legal uncertainty for addressing risks in digital space, including the key question of liability of service providers, including necessary technical auxiliary functions.
- ¶ 3 Leave a comment on paragraph 3 0
- Infrastructure intermediaries have been in the legal ‘shadows’ since the 2000 e-Commerce Directive. Today we face the necessity to clarify liability exemptions and elaborate explicit categorisation of digital services.
- ¶ 4 Leave a comment on paragraph 4 1
- Recent cases show that certain infrastructure providers unwillingly do content moderation by suspending services for the platforms in an ad-hoc manner without any transparent policy.
- ¶ 5 Leave a comment on paragraph 5 0
- We should keep in mind the proportionality of measures to target illegal content and foresee the unintended consequences on the infrastructure level. Current content moderation practices are not ideal and transparency reports are not very helpful to escape the mistakes, so what can be expected from the broader infrastructure level?
As I mentioned during the session, I believe we should be careful with using the term ‘content moderation’ in the context of the Internet infrastructure level, as these services are typically very far removed from the actual content. I would like to suggest amending this paragraph to read: “Recent cases show that certain infrastructure providers unwillingly take action that could be argued to be content moderation by suspending services for the platforms in an ad-hoc manner without any transparent policy. But infrastructure services have limited possible options, which tend to be temporary solutions (clearing cache), overbroad reactions (limiting access) or options that open up websites to cyberattack (terminating services of particular users).”