UNESCO initiates global dialogue to enhance the transparency of internet companies, with release of illustrative high-level principles

During a high-level dialogue at the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) global conference for World Press Freedom Day, the UNESCO released a brief under the title of Letting the Sun Shine In: Transparency and Accountability in the Digital Age. The brief, which includes a selection of high-level principles to enhance the transparency of internet platform companies, was welcomed by companies, regulators, and civil society. It focuses on enhancing transparency as a third way between state overregulation of content, which has led to disproportionate restrictions on human rights, and a laissez-faire approach that has failed to effectively address problematic content such as hate speech and disinformation. To this aim, it provides 26 high-level principles covering a range of issues pertinent to content and process, due diligence and redress, empowerment, commercial dimensions, personal data gathering and use, and data access.