Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 11:50 am on 27th January 2022.

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Photo of Julian Knight Julian Knight Chair, Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, Chair, Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee, Chair, Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Sub-committee on Online Harms and Disinformation, Chair, Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Sub-committee on Online Harms and Disinformation 11:50 am, 27th January 2022

I thank the hon. and learned Lady for her comments, and I have a great deal of sympathy for what she says. I am well aware that she receives unwarranted and vile abuse at times for expressing her views, and I think that is abhorrent in many respects. It highlights in many regards the point I made earlier about the social media companies being their own editors-in-chief and effectively having their own content policies. That will be the case going forward, but there needs to be oversight of those so that they are compliant with the new law as it stands. One of our recommendations is:

“We have proposed several amendments to the definition and scope of harms covered by the regime that would bring the Bill into line with the UK’s obligations to freedom of expression under international human rights law.”

I hope that that recommendation would cover many of the aspects to which the hon. and learned Lady is referring.