Int’l Comm of Jurists Training for Southeast Asian Jurists and HR Officers – Intermediary Liability Safe Harbor

by | Dec 6, 2022 | Free Speech, Open Blog | 0 comments

K.S. Park gave a lecture at an International Commission of Jurists training on November 5 on the relationship between intermediary liability safe harbor and international human rights standards. He particularly sounded alarm at the Southeast Asian (mal)adaptations of the German NetsDG, a mandatory notice-and-takedown regime, that textually does not violate the human rights standard on intermediary liability but does in effect because it incentivizes intermediary liabilities into taking down lawful contents especially for the pretext of misinformation/disinformation. Although it does not cause prior censorship or general monitoring obligations, the evils to be combatted by intermediary liability safe harbor, it does subject the scope of online discourse to the capricious sensibilities of the platform operators with respect to what is lawful. Also, some of these adaptations come with creation of administrative bodies sending takedown notices whereby the intermediaries are subjected also to the added pressure of the possible de facto/jure liability for failure to disobey, not just the liability for hosting unlawful contents. “Online safety” bills coming out of UK, Canada, and Australia are also threatening to grow into administrative censorship as the roles of communication ministries are being emphasized in mandatory notice-and-takedown regimes.



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