Tech giants have failed abysmally to stop harmful content because they put profits first and foremost

Tech giants have failed abysmally to stop harmful content because they put profits first and foremost

Tangled web

WE don’t doubt the Government’s determination to protect children from the vast amount of damaging material readily available to them online.

Certainly the tech giants have failed abysmally to stop the harm because, as Culture Secretary Michelle Donelan says, they put profits first and foremost.

There is still work to do to make sure the Government’s Online Safety Bill achieves the right balance
There is still work to do to make sure the Government’s Online Safety Bill achieves the right balanceCredit: Getty

For that reason, and because shielding our kids is so important, the attempt to force the social media companies to act responsibly is laudable.

It ought to be straightforward enough for them to block material that is blatantly illegal, whoever the audience is.

Ensuring they enforce their own age limits should also be a no-brainer, but nothing about their actions so far suggests they will be in a hurry to invest the necessary time and money.

If the social media giants take the lazy option and censor anything they think might be seen by children who are too easily able to pose as adults, then freedom of speech will suffer.

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There is still work to do to make sure the Government’s Online Safety Bill achieves the right balance.

Shore step

THOSE fed up with our borders routinely being breached by economic migrants crossing the Channel in small boats will be happy to see British Border Force officials now patrolling the beaches of France, together with their French counterparts.

It’s a welcome step in the right direction but it can only be part of the solution, as Rishi Sunak will understand full well as he wrestles with this massive issue.

Our human rights laws are open to abuse by illegal immigrants and their eager lawyers, or trumped by the European Court of Human Rights.

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As long as that continues, the evil people-smugglers will always find a way to put those with enough money into death-trap boats.

Fiends free

AS if the Security Services did not have a hard enough job, a host of convicted terrorists will become eligible for parole this year.

Experience suggests that efforts to make sure they do not continue to be a threat are likely to be hampered by use of the European Convention on Human Rights.

Take the case of convicted terrorist Wahbi Mohammed, who has resisted all attempts to deport him since he was released from a jail term for his part in plotting the attempted 21/7 atrocity in 2005, and who cannot even be monitored now because it will “violate his human rights”.

It is another perfect illustration of why the Prime Minister should consider steps to deal with the mess.

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