Hungary Announces Investigation into Social Media Censorship of Political Views
The Hungarian minister announced her decision over the weekend
Hungarian Justice Minister Judit Varga has declared that she will begin investigating censorship of political views on social media in Hungary and across Europe, according to reports.
The Hungarian minister announced her decision on social media platform Facebook over the weekend, saying she would be creating a “working group” within the ministry to “investigate the possibilities for a legal environment to ensure the transparency of social media service providers – both on EU and national level.”
“Originally their job would not be to influence societal processes and elections by censoring comments on an ideological basis, however, if they had done it once they shall accept the necessity of the regulation and follow the rules of democracy,” she added.
The announcement comes just a month following Emmanuel Macron’s announcement of forcing search engines and social media networks to censor “hate speech” in France.
According to Breitbart: The measure, which was passed in early July, would see hefty fines for internet companies who do not remove offending material within a 24-hour period.
The European Union has also pushed for censorship of “hate speech” on social media in recent years, including proposing a similar law to the French legislation in September of last year.
German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s government has also commanded social media companies to remove “hate speech” and introduced fines of up to 50 million euros for companies which violate the policy.
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Social media censorship has been a significant issue in the United States with President Donald Trump looking to use various agencies, including the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), to potentially regulate online censorship through an executive order.
A leaked draft of the executive order, entitled “Protecting Americans from Online Censorship,” would enable the FCC to alter how social media companies are treated under Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act which allows tech companies to censor lewd or questionable content.
Last month, the Justice Department launched a review of leading big tech, social media, and online search companies to decide whether their practices have violated US antitrust laws.
The DOJ's sweeping antitrust probe into online platforms will potentially threaten some of Silicon Valley's most influential companies, including Facebook, Apple, Google, and Twitter.
The investigation will investigate how the platforms have gained such levels of market dominance and whether they are engaging in practices that harmed consumers or suffocate competition in violation of federal law.