The UK government have proposed new laws designed to protect people from the dangers of the internet but campaigners have warned the changes could be disastrous.
Under the new laws, big tech companies will be held responsible for any content deemed to be offensive – such as terrorist propaganda and child abuse – which is posted on their platforms.
Such companies will be required to remove the content as quickly as possible or risk facing a fine.
While many are in favour of the proposals for attempting to offer a solution to the ills of the digital age, some are worried that the proposed law is too powerful.
The executive director of the Open Rights Group, Jim Killock, has said: “The government’s proposals would create state regulation of the speech of millions of British citizens.
“We have to expect that the duty of care will end up widely drawn with serious implications for legal content, that is deemed potentially risky, whether it really is nor not.”
His belief was reiterated by the head of research at free market think tank the Adam Smith Institute, Matthew Lesh, who said: “The government should be ashamed of themselves for leading the western world in internet censorship.
“The proposals are a historic attack on freedom of speech and the free press.”
The plans from the UK government come just weeks after the EU backed a controversial law which could change the internet as we know it.