back to article Europe Commission thunders: Tech firms must do more to remove extremist content

The European Commission has urged the likes of Google, Facebook and Twitter to do more to remove extremist content - or face further regulation. EU home affairs commissioner Dimitris Avramopoulos warned "the real battlefield is against 21st century terrorism". He said most of the recent terrorist attackers had never travelled …

  1. inmypjs Silver badge

    more pointless drivel, but, ...

    the silver lining is once we have the mechanisms in place we can ratchet down the definition of extreme and have anything we don't like removed from the internet. Criticism of the EU for starters.

    1. codejunky Silver badge

      Re: more pointless drivel, but, ...

      @ inmypjs

      I dont expect that is far off.

  2. Chris G Silver badge


    Artificial Intelligence Extremist Extirpation

    Of course the players he is encouraging to help with AI are the ones talking about employing more meatsacks to deal with the same problems.

    And, as mentioned above, once every company is looking at everything their subscribers are doing and saying, their lives will be less than a warrant away from any who can ask for it. (Except for the UK where they can approve their own requests)

  3. Anonymous Coward

    Oh.. its for the terrorists..

    so you going to start vetting people who cross your borders?.. no I didnt think so..

    So its going to be used to stop Jihadist's spouting hate and murder online.. no that would be Islamophobic.

    So its going to be used to stop people saying mean things about slimy politicians, and the odd weirdo who teaches his dog to "Sieg Heil"... you know 'extremists'

    1. Boris the Cockroach Silver badge

      Re: Oh.. its for the terrorists..

      And that wierdo allows his dog to shit on the grass too... that can be investigated too

      I'd put a joke icon... but sadly its no joke

  4. Charlie Clark Silver badge

    "the real battlefield is against 21st century terrorism"

    No it isn't. But if you do want to after the networks: make them liable for content and open to civil law suits.

    1. jmch Silver badge

      "make them liable for content"

      This. If you make money from it, you're responsible for it. Simples.

      1. Graham Cobb

        On the contrary... I believe the platforms should have more protections: open debate and discussion are the answer, not censorship. The way to win is to win the hearts and minds: better education and understanding, less discrimination, better jobs and future, redirecting the energy and resentment from young people towards providing better lives for their community. Oh, and stopping feeding the foreign wars they feel compelled to support.

        The war against terrorism is being won: terrorists are already reduced to running people over in vehicles. It will take a long time to win the war, because it requires turning around institutional problems, but it will be won by positive actions, not censorship. Think back to the Irish troubles and how long that took to resolve. It wasn't done by censorship.

        1. strum Silver badge

          >Think back to the Irish troubles and how long that took to resolve. It wasn't done by censorship.

          While I agree with your general principle, the anti-IRA campaign did involve censorship - remember the ludicrous re-voicing of Gerry Adams by actors?

          It was pathetic, of course - and made no impact on the issues - but it did demonstrate that politicians often prefer not to hear views they don't agree with.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Define Extremist content

    According to UK law THIS is extremist content:

    1. Calling for the murder of people

    2. Calling for ignoring the rule of law

    2.1. We do not have the death penalty

    2.2. Even if we did (I am all for having it brought back for Grand Treason), calling for extrajudicial execution violates at least 20 laws and statutes just and this is off the top of my head. A proper lawyer will probably count a 3 digit number of statutes and laws this violates.

    Can we have it removed. It is extremist content by all means.

    The difference between Us and THEM is that we are supposed to have principles and a rule of law. The moment we circumvent the rule of law regardless at what level - technical, administrative, military, etc we put themselves on par with THEM and justify what they do. Is it so difficult to comprehend this concept? I know, I would not expect form a junior whip promoted beyond his stature to comprehend it.

    1. Tigra 07 Silver badge

      Re: Define Extremist content

      You don't need a death penalty to kill an enemy combatant in a foreign land with a drone strike. You just need to be able to justify the death to the UN, which has been done in as little as 3 pages by the UK Gov in exactly this situation while killing a Brit fighting for ISIS.

      For the record if you go to learn how to fight a war against your own country then i'm all for the country destroying you in a drone strike. That's self defence.


      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Define Extremist content

        You don't need a death penalty to kill an enemy combatant in a foreign land

        You do.

        1. There has to be a war and it has to be an enemy we are at war with. Please clarify the date the UK Parliament declared a war and with which state. This is the sequence of events which declare a person an enemy combatant and take the military gloves off. In fact, from the perspective of the rule of law it would have been easier to recognize ISIS as a state, then declare war on it. Officially.

        2. The two alternatives to this are:

        2.1. To to trial the person in absentia for any set of crimes you like. I personally like Grand Treason being brought in and the court to sentence him to be executed. Then all gloves are off. Unfortunately this violates ECHR unless... see next point

        2.2. Officially declare ISIS an insurrection against the rule of law in the UK. A government is entitled to terminate anyone and anything it likes to quell an insurrection - you can check article 2 of ECHR itself. This is actually a can of worms in its own right as it is effectively declaring martial law.

        ECHR is unclear how and where we stand with 2.2 and assisting a foreign government in foreign land. It simply does not properly cover that. What is clear is that any interpretation for that involves an authorization from a foreign government. You cannot be quelling an insurrection while being opposed to a foreign government - that is an oxymoron. We do not have such authorizations for half of the places we are flying drones today. We do not have it for Syria, we do not have it for Yemen either.

        Additionally, what is clear, is that there is a specific legal language to be used in that case. It is specifically an INSURRECTION. There is no such things as War on Terror, War on Wanking, Wanking on Terrorr or Wanking on Wanking from a legal perspective.

  6. J.G.Harston Silver badge

    When I see them screaming that the Post Office must prevent extremist literature being transmitted over their carrier channel, then I'll believe that something is happening.

    1. jmch Silver badge

      The post office isn't examining the content of its parcels to better advertise to the sender and/or recipient

      1. Fading Silver badge


        Though they are happy to open up anything that may require customs duty being applied......

  7. ratfox Silver badge

    Do they realize that they are outsourcing censorship to private companies? AI-powered censorship, no less. This is going to end well.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Scary thought - but you just made me realise that I trust Google, Facebook & Twitter more than I do our government in this

  8. Michael Habel Silver badge

    Dont worry...

    Net Nutrality will save the day... (And, Free Speach)... Or so say the nutters, that actually think that its a great idea.

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