Act for the Freedom to Express One’s Views and Obtain and Disseminate Information on the Internet
Poland’s national conservative government has detailed a new law protecting free speech online against Big Tech censorship, backed by a new court and big fines.
Minister of Justice Zbigniew Ziobro has announced the draft ‘Act for the Freedom to Express One’s Views and Obtain and Disseminate Information on the Internet’ will give social media users a statutory right to appeal bans and content removals on social media platforms such as Facebook on Twitter, which they will be able to escalate to a new Court for the Protection of Freedom of Speech in a streamlined, all-digital process.
If the new court rules that the tech censors have removed accounts or deleted posts for speech which is legal under Polish law, they must be restored — or the social media firms involved will face fines of as much as 1.8 million euros, enforced by the Slavic country’s Office of Electronic Communications, according to reports.
“In Germany, the Minister of Justice may arbitrarily decide what content needs to be eliminated from the Internet. This is the introduction of censorship. We want to balance the freedom of public debate,” Ziobro explained of the planned legislation recently.
“We want to regulate the relationship between social media users and their owners… It is primarily about censorship when expressing opinions that are consistent with Polish law”, added deputy minister Sebastian Kaleta elsewhere.