Intermediary liabilityIntermediary Liability and Content Regulation

“Intermediary liability” describes the allocation of legal responsibility to content providers of all kinds for regulated categories of content. The presumption against governments imposing intermediary liability on online platforms for user-generated content encourages user free expression, as well as platform innovation, and is often credited with facilitating the tremendous expansion of internet and mobile communications networks across the world. More recently, conversations around the regulation of platform “content moderation” practices has emerged as a related area of governmental focus.

GNI seeks to preserve and expand free-expression protections for individuals throughout the ICT value-chain. Since 2009, GNI has issued numerous statements highlighting the importance of intermediary protections, engaged in open government consultations, and called attention to and expressed concern about problematic laws, policies, and actions in a number of countries and contexts.  For instance, GNI has promoted good practices for companies and governments in addressing alleged terrorist or extremist content online while respecting human rights, informed by extensive multistakeholder consultation on this challenging topic.

In 2020, GNI released Content Regulation and Human Rights: Analysis and Recommendations,” a policy brief that analyzes more than 20 recent governmental initiatives that claim to address various forms of digital harm. The brief offers practical guidance for governments and other stakeholders on how to formulate and implement content regulations that are effective, fit-for-purpose, and enhance and protect the rights to freedom of expression and privacy.

GNI Statement on Government Efforts to Ban Digital Communications Platforms

February 22, 2023|feature, intermediary liability, Issues, issues highlight, media releases, network disruptions|

GNI is troubled by recent efforts by democratic states to completely ban the use of digital communications platforms, which pose significant human rights risks and are likely to have global ramifications. When governments have legitimate concerns about the impacts and conduct of digital platforms...Read more.


GNI statement on Türkiye’s continued push to regulate digital content and pressure intermediaries

January 24, 2023|feature, intermediary liability, Issues, legal frameworks, media releases|

The Global Network Initiative (GNI), a global, multistakeholder organization focused on freedom of expression and privacy in the information and communications technology (ICT) sector, expresses deep concern about new laws targeting social media and private messaging services in Türkiye. GNI calls on the Turkish government, regulators, and policymakers to reconsider [...]