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Internet firms promise action on terror content

Monday, June 05, 2017 - 01:34

Facebook says it wants to make its platform a 'hostile environment' for extremists as both it and Twitter respond to pressure for internet firms to take more responsibility for content posted on their services. David Pollard reports.

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Three times in three months. Britain picks up the pieces after yet another terror attack. Its security forces on high alert. Its prime minister talking tough .... Ready to point a finger at the perpetrators - and the internet sites she says helps them. (SOUNDBITE) (English) UK PRIME MINISTER THERESA MAY, SAYING: "We cannot allow this ideology the safe space it needs to breed. Yet that is precisely what the internet and the big companies that provide internet based services provide." The response from some of the biggest is swift. Facebook wants its platform to be - quote - "a hostile environment for terrorists." It's working aggressively, it says, to remove "terrorist content". Twitter too saying its pushing to tackle the spread of militant propaganda. Adding it had already suspended 400,000 accounts in the second half of last year. While Google says it's committed to working with governments and NGOs to deal with the problem. The promises may, though, be easier than the actual practice of doing so. SOUNDBITE (English) IG SENIOR ANALYST, CHRIS BEAUCHAMP, SAYING: "I think there's a lot of work to be done on that front of working out what you can and can't show. And I think the attacks in London over the last three months will bring this one to the fore that they have still a lot of work to do and that they maybe prioritize growth at the expense of maintaining control over what is being posted on those sites." It's not the first time May has pressured online firms. Last month, she pledged to make them pay toward the cost of policing the internet with an industry-wide levy - if she wins a nationwide election on Thursday.

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Internet firms promise action on terror content

Monday, June 05, 2017 - 01:34