The UK has devised the Audiovisual Media Services Directive, in order to toughen regulation around explicit online content

The UK government has proposed giving new powers to the country’s telecoms regulator which would enable them to levy multi-million-pound fines to online platforms who do not prevent the circulation of explicit material.

Platforms such as Facebook, Twitter and YouTube could face multi-million-pound fines if they fail to take adequate steps to protect children from viewing pornographic or violent content.

"These new rules are an important first step in regulating video-sharing online, and we’ll work closely with the government to implement them," an Ofcom spokesperson told the BBC.

"We also support plans to go further and legislate for a wider set of protections, including a duty of care for online companies towards their users."

The new legislation would take effect from the 19th September 2020 and is part of the UK’s commitment to online safety, as a result of its membership of the European Union. If the country were to leave the European Union without a deal on the 31st of October, the government will not be obliged to implement the Audiovisual Media Services Directive into UK law.   

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