Online Harms White Paper

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 5:31 pm on 8th April 2019.

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Photo of Jeremy Wright Jeremy Wright The Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport 5:31 pm, 8th April 2019

I think there are two points worth making in response to the right hon. Lady. First, how well the platforms hold to their own terms and conditions may well give the regulator a good indication of how well they are complying with their overarching duty of care. Secondly, she is right that the White Paper envisages that a platform might say to a regulator, “We don’t wish to follow the codes of practice,” but if a platform chooses that path, it must be able to demonstrate to the regulator that the approach it takes instead is at least as effective in dealing with online harms as the codes of practice would have been. Of course, if the platform did not succeed in persuading the regulator that it had done that, the overarching duty of care would continue to apply to it. The duty does not rely on the codes of practice for its ongoing effectiveness.