Keeping Consumers Safe

Mark Bunting has published a paper, ‘Keeping Consumers Safe Online: Legislating for platform accountability for online content,’ which considers options for the UK Government’s intended White Paper on online harms and safety. The paper, which was funded by Sky, suggests that legislation should establish a framework for oversight and accountability of online platforms’ handling of harmful and illegal content.
Mark identifies three goals of regulation: to clarify what consumers should expect from online platforms; ensure platforms’ handling of content is proportionate, accountable, fair and responsible; verify that particular platforms act proportionately to evidence of harm. Most ‘content regulation’ should be done by platforms themselves, as it is today, but the paper proposes that an oversight body – either industry-led or statutory - be established to assess their effectiveness and identify where more action is needed.