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Centre for Commercial Law Studies

Hate Speech, Fake News & Social Media: Time for New Responsibilities or Moral Panic?

17 June 2019

Time: 3:15 - 8:00pm
Venue: Bird & Bird, 12 New Fetter Lane, London, EC4A 1JP

An image with a blue strip at the top with CCLS and Bird & Bird logo with an image of a phone screen and appsTo mark the launch of our Technology, Media and Telecommunications Law Institute at CCLS, Queen Mary University of London we're holding a thought provoking seminar (in partnership with Bird & Bird), which will respond to the “Online Harms” White Paper recently published by the Home Office and the Department of Culture, Media and Sport. We'd be delighted if you could join us.

The current Government has debated for a while as to how to tackle “harmful” content on social media sites, and it looks likely that it expects tech companies to sign up to a number of Codes of Practice and, police all content on their sites, combined with the imposition of a new statutory duty of care, the creation of a new regulator with powers to fine, issue sanctions against senior executives, powers to disrupt, and order blocking.

During the seminar we will explore key issues raised in the White Paper and platform regulation from the viewpoint of intermediary liability for content; what the Codes of Practice should or should not contain; how this regulatory framework will be implemented; whether it is or is not likely to be successful; the role and limits of artificial intelligence in pro-active regulation, and the conflicts of law and ethical issues arising for global social media and tech companies.


  • 15.15 – 15.45: Registration and refreshments

  • 15.45 – 15.50: Welcome and introductions

  • 15.50 - 16.05: Introducing the issues
  • 16.05 - 17.00: Panel One: How to define harmful content online and how to scope the statutory duty of care & the Codes of Practice

  • 17.00 - 17.55: Panel Two: A new national regulatory framework in global media: conflicts of law, ethical standards and freedom of expression

  • 17.55 – 18.50: Panel Three: The role of Artificial Intelligence in pro-active technology regulation: what can social media platforms do to minimise harmful content and what are the risks?

  • 18.50 – 18.55: Closing remarks

  • 18.55 – 20.00: Networking drinks

Please note Chatham House Rules apply.


For more information, please contact the CCLS Events Team.

Photography, video and audio recording

Please note that CCLS events may be photographed or video and audio recorded. These materials will be used for internal and external promotional purposes only by Queen Mary University of London. If you object to appearing in the photographs, please let our photographer know on the day. Alternatively you can email the CCLS Events Team in advance of the event that you are attending.

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