Why shouldn’t private companies regulate the internet? Experts and activists discuss intermediary liability in South Africa
SABC covered the meeting by interviewing project coordinator, Emilar Vushe Gandhi [From minute 15:00 on]
Internet intermediaries are any companies that provide internet services, from physical networks to software developers.
On 24-28 February the APC community will be in Geneva discussing the future of internet governance in the context of the UN at the third meeting of a working group that addresses enhanced cooperation among multi-stakeholders.
APC and its community will remember the 2013 forum most for the impact of the Snowden revelations, ICANN and Brazil’s initative to convene an internet governance meeting in 2014, the hospitality of our Indonesian hosts, and for Miss Internet Bali. Read our full assessment.
Internet intermediary liability can have a significant deterrent effect on intermediaries’ willingness and ability to provide services, and therefore may end up hindering the development of the internet itself. For this reason, legislators around the globe have defined special “comfort zones” for the operation of intermediaries, also known as “safe harbours”, limiting the liability of such entities in specific sets of circumstances.
As this background paper illustrates, significant differences exist concerning the subjects of these limitations, their scope and their modes of operation. Nevertheless, international best practices can be identified that may provide useful guidance for the drafting or the improvement of the current legislation in a number of African countries.
APC welcomes the announcement by the Brazilian government to convene a global meeting in 2014 to address current internet governance public policy challenges and issues, and suggests specific topics for the agenda and mechanisms to ensure a diverse, meaningful and effective participation of all interested stakeholders.