Is this the big step towards making the Internet a safer place?
Today, the Government released a discussion document: Safer Online Services and Media Platforms. It aims to reduce people’s exposure to harmful content, and create a system that is easier to navigate if people need to report harmful content.
The document sets out proposed reforms to the way media and online platforms are regulated in Aotearoa.
Key features are; developing codes of practice for online and other media platforms, and a new regulator to approve and enforce those codes.
InternetNZ Chief Executive, Vivien Maidaborn, says today is a huge milestone that opens opportunities for making the Internet safer for everyone in Aotearoa.
“Our laws and processes are over 30 years old and are not adequate for the online world we live in today.
“We are very pleased to see this review finally launched. It could potentially be one of the most important opportunities in a generation to enable regulation that helps address harmful online content,” says Maidaborn.
The Government has set a timeframe for public consultation, asking for everyone's view on the 90-page document by 31 July 2023.
Harmful online content affects nearly everyone who uses the Internet in some way, but disproportionately affects certain groups and communities, including Māori, Pasifika, women, and Muslim and LGBTTQIA+ people.
“It is especially important that communities that are at most risk have their say. This proposed regulation, and the codes to be developed under it, will not serve those communities unless they are heard during this process.
“Feedback from diverse voices is critical if the government is to get this right and the systems are going to be effective,” says Maidaborn.
We will be listening to and supporting people and communities to think about the proposals and submit their views.
More information about the review can be found on the DIA website here.