A number of free speech NGOs led by Big Brother Watch have joined forces to oppose the Online Harms Bill which will go in front of Parliament this year.
The Government’s plan for an Online Safety Bill puts vast categories of lawful content in the crosshairs for censorship. The proposals will empower a state regulator, Ofcom, to decide what speech is allowed online.
They told Mr Dowden: “The Government’s proposals would give state sponsorship to tech companies’ content policies and terms and conditions. These policies are far more restrictive of free speech than UK laws and it is unclear that the UK Government would be fulfilling its duty to protect the right to freedom of expression in requiring adherence to such policies.”