HomeTechTikTok and Twitch are liable for fines under the new Ofcom rules

TikTok and Twitch are liable for fines under the new Ofcom rules

Ofcom has announced the steps it expects video-sharing platforms to adopt to protect their users.

The VSPs which include TikTok, Snapchat, Vimeo, and Twitch should take “appropriate measures” to protect users from the content of violence against children, terrorism, and racism.

A third of internet users have come across negative content on these sites, Ofcom says.

The regulator is likely to penalize VSPs who violate the rules or in extreme cases – stop the service completely.

The VSPs must:

  • Set out and enforce effectively clear guidelines to upload content
  • help make the reporting and complaint process simpler
  • Limit access to adult-oriented websites with strong age verification

Ofcom has promised to release an annual report on the scope of those included which is 18 total – are following the correct steps.

The specific legal standards determine whether services meet the requirements of a VSP, and if it is within UK legal jurisdiction.

YouTube is likely to be included in the Irish regulatory system, however it will be within the range of Online Safety Bill, which is a lot more expansive in its mandate to address online-related harms that occur on major platforms, including Twitter, Facebook, and Google when it becomes law.

Ofcom stated that one of its top priorities in the next year will be working with VSPs to lower the risk of sexual assault material for children being uploaded.

As per the Internet Watch Foundation, there is an increase of 77% in self-generated abuse content that was created in the year 2020.

Material that is inappropriate

Ofcom’s work will not include the evaluation of the quality of videos.

The document acknowledges that the vast volume of content that makes it impossible to avoid any harm from happening.

It also pledged it would take a “rigorous but fair” approach to its new responsibilities.

The chief executive, Lady Melanie Dawes said: “Online videos play an important role in our lives today and especially for children.

“But most people view inappropriate, violent, or hateful materials when using them.

“The platforms where these videos are shared now have a legal duty to take steps to protect their users.”

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