Posted in: Tattle, Technology

Australian MP targeted by conspiracy posts calls for Facebook to be treated as publisher

Exclusive: Nationals’ Anne Webster reveals she is pressing for legislation to hold social media platforms to account for content they publish

  • Will Australia treat big tech as publishers? – Australian politics live podcast

The Nationals MP Anne Webster is lobbying senior ministers to bring forward legislation that would force Facebook and other platforms to assume editorial responsibility for the content they publish, in an effort to combat proliferating misinformation.

Webster launched defamation proceedings against Australian conspiracy theorist Karen Brewer over a series of posts made on Facebook in April this year. The posts, which were shared hundreds of times, including on accounts associated with Mildura, Webster’s home town, accused the first-term MP of being “a member of a secretive paedophile network” who had been “parachuted into parliament to protect a past generation of paedophiles”.

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