The spread of false information and hate speech has increased with the rise of social media. This paper critically examines this phenomenon and the reactions of governments and major corporations in Europe. Policymakers have turned towards national regulation as a means to manage false information and hate speech. This article looks into the legislative frameworks on the issue in Germany, France, the UK, the Czech Republic, and Italy and compares them. In response to such regulatory pressure, tech companies have been changing aspects of their platforms to deal with this trend, for example through content moderation. We propose tentative alternatives to this current approach towards reinforcing boundaries for freedom of expression.
Rafael Schmuziger Goldzweig is a Research Associate at the Dahrendorf Forum based at the Hertie School of Governance. His research interests lie at the intersection of technology and politics, focusing on new media and elections.
Marie Wachinger is a Research Associate at the Dahrendorf Forum based at the Hertie School of Governance. Her research focuses on solidarity, statehood, and the EU.
Daniela Stockmann is a Professor of Digital Politics and Media at the Hertie School of Governance. and a member of the Dahrendorf Forum working group on Societal Change, Politics, and the Public Sphere.
Andrea Römmele is a Professor of Communication in Politics and Civil Society at the Hertie School and Co-Chair of the Dahrendorf Forum working group on Societal Change, Politics, and the Public Sphere.
Image from karma.co.uk