In this editorial for a special edition of APCNews we look at the role of governments and the impact of regulations that hold internet intermediaries liable for content uploaded or circulated by users. We argue that protecting intermediaries is an important step for having a free and open internet and for promoting the development of regional content, and stress the importance of explicitly addressing the impact of current regulations on women and women’s rights defenders.
APCNews interviewed Gbenga Sesan, executive director of Paradigm Initiative Nigeria (PIN), about the latest trends in the country towards holding intermediaries liable for their users’ behaviour. We also asked him about other pressing internet issues in the country.
Many governments in Africa are establishing regulations to further control the flow of information on the internet. This trend includes holding intermediaries liable for content circulated by their users on their platforms and networks. APCNews talked to researcher Nicolo Zingales to find out more about the issue in the African context.
This statement, supported by APC member in South Korea Jinbonet, observes that NETmundial was “a successful experiment, providing a cornerstone model for making internet public policy decision-making processes more transparent, democratic and cooperative,” despite its shortcomings.
NETmundial was a remarkable and historic event. To give it its due and build on it going forward, in this assessment we acknowledge its achievements as well as its flaws.