January 29, 2021

Big Tech: platform, publisher or poison?

LOCKDOWN DEBATE: What should be the role of social media today? If the public square – universities, schools, workplaces, pubs, parks and polling booths – are under some form of lockdown or restriction, is the internet the only viable place to quickly and freely share ideas? And, if so, should we begin to understand Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, YouTube or Reddit as publishers, platforms or (virtual) public spaces? What kind of regulation – if any – do we need to ensure healthy debate, and what are the legal implications for such changes? In short, in a world when everyone (even David Attenborough) seems to have an online presence, what role does Big Tech play today – and what should it be in the ‘new normal’ of the post-pandemic world? Discussed by Rob Lyons, Andrew Orlowski, Timandra Harkness and Nico Macdonald.

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