The UK government’s Online Safety Bill has the potential to be a landmark piece of legislation, setting new norms for accountability and online safety that could have far-reaching impact for the major social media platforms. Is this the next step to a safer web for all?
From vaccine misinformation to racist and misogynistic abuse, the scale of harmful content online is a cause of increasingly widespread public concern. Meanwhile, recent whistle-blower accounts from within Big Tech have shed new light on the nature of the algorithm design and business models that are driving the amplification of toxic content and threatening both individual safety and wider societal health.
As the UK government’s draft Online Safety Bill passes through its final scrutiny stages, the RSA gathers an expert panel to review the quality of public debate that has accompanied the progress of the Bill thus far, and the policy proposals in question - from expanded and strengthened regulatory powers to increased demands of the technology platforms themselves.
Speakers to include William Perrin of Carnegie UK Trust, whose work has been central to the scrutiny of the Online Safety Bill, and Chloe Colliver of the Institute for Strategic Dialogue, whose work on disinformation and online extremism has shone light on the darker reaches of the net.
The RSA has been investigating the role and rise of online misinformation as part of our Tech & Society series. Within this work we have sought to understand how we tackle misinformation by viewing the problem through several lenses: historical, regulatory, psychological, behavioural. Our latest report will be published alongside this event.