Fine Gael TD Hildegarde Naughton attended the ‘International Grand Committee’ in Westminster today and signed ‘International Principles for the law governing the internet’ on behalf of the Oireachtas Committee on Communications.
Deputy Naughton secured the agreement of the committee to work towards a UN convention on Social Media Governance, to protect both our democracies and our young people.
The Grand Committee has also agreed to meet in Dublin and to work with the United Nations and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development to help drive reforms in how social media companies are held accountable.
Legislators from Brazil, Latvia, Singapore, Britain, Canada, Australia, Ireland and Argentina were also joined by representatives from France and Belgium as the committee seeks to hold social media corporations accountable.
The participating countries have agreed to collectively sign a document at the hearing entitled ‘International Principles for the law governing the internet’.
As Chair of the Oireachtas Communications Committee, Deputy Naughton signed the document on behalf of the Irish committee.
Deputy Naughton said: “I hope today marks a watershed in holding social media companies to account and making them responsible for their actions.
“The document I signed today ‘International Principles for the law governing the internet’ represents a roadmap for best practice in oversight of social media.
“I was very pleased that the grand committee supported my proposal to work towards a UN convention on Social Media Governance.
“There are two main reasons why is UN convention required; one is child protection and the other is preservation of democracy. It is clear we need agreed standards to tackle fake news and harmful communications.
“This unprecedented grand committee represents hundreds of millions of people. I am delighted that countries are realising that problems on social media, like the social media companies themselves transcend borders,” the Fine Gael TD said.
“This committee will put pressure on social media companies like Facebook to engage with policy makers in a meaningful way.
“Ireland will regulate for its citizens however the internet is global and needs a global response,” the Galway West TD said.