Saturday, January 29, 2022

France seeks to fine Facebook on hateful content


Zubair Yaqoob
The author has diversified experience in investigative journalism. He is Chief content editor at

French lawmakers recently approved a measure seeking to force technology companies such as Google and Facebook to remove content the French government considers to incite hatred, the Associated Press reported earlier in the day.

According to the report, the bill, which is part of a larger Internet regulation bill, was adopted by the House of Representatives of the French parliament on Thursday, and if it is fully approved, 24 hours will be given to social networks to remove hate content from their platforms as soon as they are marked. According to The New York Times, the bill will move to the Senate upper house, to discuss the matter afterwards.

The language included in this section requires the removal of any content that incites or encourages hateful violence or discrimination based on race or religion, as well as child pornography, and if the platforms do not remove content within this time frame, they may face a fine of 1.25 million euro.

Earlier this year, French President Emmanuel Macron proposed the measure, citing an increase in the number of anti-Semitic attacks and extremist language and behavior on the Internet. According to the Associated Press, French lawmakers are divided over how to define the hate speech in the bill.

In 2018, Germany approved a similar law that officially came into effect on Jan 1, which requires the platforms to remove illegal content under German law within the same 24-hour timeframe, but exceeds the potential fine of 50 million euros. Social media outlets are under increasing pressure to remove hateful content following the tragic mosque attacks in Christchurch, New Zealand, earlier this year.

Facebook continues to suffer from the consequences of its indulgence in dealing with data users of social platform and leaking, where the company has recently received a new slap after the Italian user control and protection system imposed a fine of 1.1 million dollars on the US company, on leaking scandal of Cambridge Analtica.

The value of the fine was determined according to the Italian Privacy and Data Protection Act, after Cambridge Analtica data leak, which was in effect at the time of the breach of the social platform, but at the same time the value of the fine imposed on Facebook is very small compared to the European law. The new, which may reach the fine to more than one billion with a company the size of Facebook.

Read also: European parliament voted to impose fine on social media platforms on extremist content

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