Internet intermediaries: from defamation to Directive to data protection

Mac Sithigh, D. (Advisor)

Activity: Talk or presentation typesPublic lecture/debate/seminar


In 1997, Lawrence Godfrey asked Demon Internet to take down a Usenet post on the grounds that it was defamatory, kickstarting a process that led to the famous decisions of Morland J in Godfrey v Demon Internet, interpreting s 1 Defamation Act 1996. In 2007, the European Commission published its major study on the liability of intermediaries, taking stock of developments since the 2000 E-Commerce Directive, at EU level and within Member States. In 2017, as the UK prepares to leave the European Union, the role of the intermediary is still under scrutiny. Whether it be tackling abuse and harassment on social media, preventing minors from accessing sexually explicit material, revising the scope of regulating audiovisual media services, or reforms to data protection law, Parliament and Government are considering, time and time again, placing new duties on intermediaries - often requirements to act or report or co-operate rather than a full-blown imposition of liability. What, then, is the legal position of the intermediary, and how might it change in the coming years?
Period05 Oct 2017
Held atInstitute for Advanced Legal Studies, United Kingdom
Degree of RecognitionNational