Following yesterday’s violent events in Dublin, Coimisiún na Meán has held meetings with platforms today together with the European Commission to get more information about how they have responded to the incidents that unfolded online and offline.
Yesterday afternoon, Coimisiún na Meán alerted the platforms to our concerns about the possibility of graphic images and videos being shared, and about the incident being used as a reason to incite violence and hatred, following news of the stabbing incident. The platforms informed us that they had activated their incident response mechanisms.
A feature of the rioting last night was the use of messaging and online platforms to spread hatred, to incite violence and crime, as well as to spread disinformation. Coimisiún na Méan calls on all platforms based in Ireland to limit the spread of such content and take steps not to amplify it. We also encourage them to work with An Garda Síochána in identifying persons using their platforms to spread hatred and incite crime. We encourage any organisations which have evidence of this type of content being disseminated online to bring it to the attention of An Garda Síochána.
We remain concerned about the spread of videos or imagery showing graphic violence, speech inciting hatred or violence, and the spread of disinformation and misinformation. We plan to meet with the platforms again in the coming days to receive further updates on how the platforms are responding to these events.
Under the EU Digital Services Act, Very Large Online Platforms are obliged to assess and mitigate a series of risks from the use of their services, including negative effects for public security. They are also obliged to notify law enforcement authorities if they become aware of information about an actual or potential criminal offence involving public safety.
Coimisiún na Meán emphasises in the strongest possible terms that online services should act responsibly and do their utmost to prevent their services being used to exacerbate the current situation.
We also alert the general public to be alert to misinformation and disinformation circulating online. We urge them to rely on reputable sources of information and to Stop, Think and Check when reading information and especially before sharing it.
Media contact: Joanne Ahern, DHR Communications, Tel: 087-9881837
All other queries: Coimisiún na Meán, 01-6441200.
Notes for Editors:
About Coimisiún na Meán:
Coimisiún na Meán is Ireland’s new commission for regulating broadcasters, on-demand services, and online media, and supporting media development. Established in March 2023 under the Online Safety and Media Regulation Act 2022, it builds on the work of its predecessor, the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland. It is responsible for ensuring and maintaining a thriving and diverse media landscape in Ireland that facilitates a mix of voices, opinions and sources of news and current affairs, as well as a safe online environment.
Its responsibilities are to:
Advice about misinformation and disinformation can be found at https://www.bemediasmart.ie/