Australia has become the first country ever to pass legislation prohibiting the sharing of “abhorrent violent material” on the internet.
The trouble with the legislation is that the role of detecting those who are sharing violent content online is to be shared among internet service providers, social media platforms, content contributors and web hosting companies.
Detection of such objectionable material should be reported to the police immediately, or these organizations will be subject to severe punishment.
If it’s the public sector that first spotted violence on the web, even when the concerned service providers or social media channels have removed the content after being notified, they are still violating the law as the deletion will be deemed too late.
With the new rule, the Australian government has set up a nationwide internet monitoring system, but the private sector has to bear the cost, which could be huge.
I believe this will soon lead to a major consolidation in the country’s technology service sector.
The full article appeared in the Hong Kong Economic Journal on April 17
Translation by Connie Li
[Chinese version 中文版]
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