IPA broadly welcomes Ofcom regulation of social media

A comment by IPA Director General Paul Bainsfair.

The IPA has broadly welcomed the Government’s decision to give Ofcom new powers to regulate social media over harmful online content.

Says Paul Bainsfair, Director General, IPA:

"We clearly support the protection of individuals from online harms. Simultaneously we support protecting advertisers from appearing adjacent to, and inadvertently financially supporting, harmful content. We therefore support any regulation that helps to alleviate such instances for all.

"Furthermore, we support equivalent regulation for the online arena as exists for offline media. Extending Ofcom’s remit should deliver this.

"Having said this, the devil is of course in the detail. On a macro level, it will be interesting to see how this new regulation will balance out protection of individuals from harmful content with freedom of speech. And on an industry level, whether such regulation could risk innovation as large existing platforms with ad revenue can, in general, more easily comply. We shall therefore continue to monitor developments."

Last updated 21 September 2020