LSE Law students recently submitted a third-party intervention before the European Court of Human Rights, explaining the importance of freedom of expression on social media and why states should always proportionately distribute the liability for unlawful content in the digital ecosystem.
The intervention was prepared in the case of Sanchez v France. Its main focus is the question of limits of liability for comments on social media. The brief was prepared by five LLM students (LSE ‘22) — Tatjana Grote, Yara Mazhar, Harold Minarro-Escalona, Cham Mikhaeil, Pragya Sinha-Kumar and Sanjana Sreenath — as a part of the ECtHR Intervention Clinic supervised by Dr Husovec, Assistant Professor at LSE Law School.
The brief argues that the Court should always consider the digital ecosystem in its entirety. Where more actors create a forum for discussion, such as on social media, shared responsibility should be the guiding principle. Owners of pages on social media platforms shall not be expected to remove someone else’s unlawful comments before they are notified about them. The only exception is the case when owners of pages incited unlawful comments in the first place.
“We are inviting the Court to nuance its existing case law concerning platform liability and freedom of expression”, said Dr Husovec, summarizing the brief.
The full brief is available here. https://husovec.eu/wp-content/uploads/2022/03/Final-web.pdf
Click here to read more about the ECtHR Clinic, an extra-curricular activity for LSE LLM students, run by Dr Husovec in collaboration with an NGO, the European Information Society Institute (EISi).