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Social Media: Journalism

Question for Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

UIN HL3973, tabled on 10 November 2021

To ask Her Majesty's Government what plans they have to introduce guidelines for social media companies on what counts as journalism in the Online Safety Bil.

Answered on

23 November 2021

The draft Online Safety Bill requires the highest risk, highest reach in-scope service providers (‘Category 1’ services) to safeguard journalistic content. This is defined as UK-linked content that is generated for the purposes of journalism. As part of this duty, Category 1 services must specify in their terms of service the method by which they identify content as being created for the purposes of journalism. In doing so, companies will be expected to consider the ordinary English meaning of journalism, the underlying purpose of protecting freedom of expression and information, and relevant case law. Ofcom, the online safety regulator, will produce codes of practice to assist companies in complying with their duties to protect journalism.