Broadcasting Authority of Ireland to police harmful online content across Europe 2 months ago

Broadcasting Authority of Ireland to police harmful online content across Europe

Calls have also been made for the introduction of a dedicated Online Safety Commissioner.

The Broadcasting Authority of Ireland (BAI) has proposed to the government that it should be given powers to regulate harmful content on social media.

Currently responsible for governing Irish television and radio alongside RTÉ and TG4, the BAI is now looking for authority over Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, as well as online media players.

If approved, the BAI would be responsible for policing content not just in Ireland, but across Europe.

The news comes in the wake of an official warning by An Garda Síochána to the public in relation to the sharing of images of children involved in court proceedings.

That warning was issued following the conclusion of a trial in Dublin's Central Criminal Court on Tuesday, in which two 14-year-old boys were convicted of murdering schoolgirl Anastasia Kriegel.

According to proposals seen by the Sunday Independent, the BAI will be responsible for new rules for online content.

Among those new measures; an age verification process, parental controls, the establishment of an online safety code and the introduction of a "robust" complaints system.

The proposals also argue for the creation of a dedicated Online Safety Commissioner, whose responsibilities would include serving removal notices on behalf of Irish citizens who have been directly impacted by harmful content.

Speaking to the Sunday Independent, BAI CEO Michael O'Keeffe said:

"There will definitely be pressure on Ireland because Facebook, Google, Twitter… all of them are here.

"We would be suggesting things like age verification systems, and content rating systems. And a robust complaints resolution system.

"Given the size and the scale of the content, you have to put the onus on the companies."