UK proposes Internet safety levy for Internet companies

The British government has proposed a levy on social media companies and Internet providers that would help fund the government’s online safety strategy, mainly aimed to address online bullying and abuse for children and other vulnerable users. The levy would initially be voluntary, although the government may look into underpinning it in legislation. Ultimately, ministers are examining whether social media firms could be classified as ‘publications’ instead of ‘communication platforms’, which would increase the companies’ responsibility for the content on their platforms. According to digital minister Karen Bradley, ‘The Internet has been an amazing force for good, but it has caused undeniable suffering and can be an especially harmful place for children and vulnerable people’ and ‘We need an approach to the Internet that protects everyone without restricting growth and innovation in the digital economy’.