An Australian court on Monday ordered Google to pay a former lawmaker A$715,000 ($515,000), saying its refusal to remove a YouTuber’s “relentless, racist, vilificatory, abusive and defamatory” videos drove him out of politics.
More on the story here: Google ordered to pay Australian politician over defamatory YouTube videos
On one side, tech giants are indeed reluctant to moderate hate speech, mobbing and sextortion posts, causing irreparable harm to the victims by sluggishness and negligence. On the other side, categorial content removal will certainly be incompatible with free speech and may hinder innovation. Moreover, cybercriminals may also abuse the proposed novelties by perfidiously suppressing genuine posts, while propagating fake news campaigns in parallel.
There is also an increasing and alarming trend to hold online service providers accountable for content published by their users. For instance, in the US, amendments or even repeal of Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act are vividly debated. If such changes succeed, social media and countless other web resources may be sued for content or comments posted by their users.