Social Media Firms Face $53 Million Fines in Germany for Fake News, Hate Speech

The German government is taking aim at fake news and hate speech on social media and looks set to slap significant punitive fines on companies that don’t do enough to combat illicit content.

Federal Minister of Justice Heiko Maas presented a bill on Tuesday intended to strengthen the crackdown on hate speech and fake news on social-media platforms.

The Ministry of Justice said the bill established standards for “effective and transparent” complaint management and required operators of social-media networks to report quarterly on the handling of complaints about illegal content.

Companies could face punitive fines if they do not comply with the law. Operators of social networks that do not create effective complaint management systems or do not delete criminal content would be committing an administrative offense. Responsible individuals and the companies themselves could face fines of up to €5 million ($5.3 million) and €50 million ($53 million), respectively.

Read more at Variety

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