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One of Jisc’s activities is to monitor and, where possible, influence regulatory developments that affect us and our customer universities, colleges and schools as operators of large computer networks. Since Janet and its customer networks are classified by Ofcom as private networks, postings here are likely to concentrate on the regulation of those networks. Postings here are, to the best of our knowledge, accurate on the date they are made, but may well become out of date or unreliable at unpredictable times thereafter. Before taking action that may have legal consequences, you should talk to your own lawyers. NEW: To help navigate the many posts on the General Data Protection Regulation, I've classified them as most relevant to developing a GDPR compliance process, GDPR's effect on specific topics, or how the GDPR is being developed. Or you can just use my free GDPR project plan.

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[Discussion] Notice and Action procedures

Thursday, July 5, 2012 - 13:56

The European Commission have opened a consultation on “notice and action” procedures (in the UK we tend to refer to them as notice and takedown) by those who host content on the Internet. Since Janet customers may see a different side of the issue from us as operators of the network, it would be helpful to get your comments to inform our response.

First there are some specific questions from the consultation:

  • What sort of material do you complain about to others (copyright, phishing, etc (Q5 has a full list))?
  • Can you find how to complain?
  • Does it get taken down quickly?
  • What sort of material do others complain about to you?
  • Do you get complaints apparently intended to remove legal material?

On more general points my inclination at the moment is to suggest a couple of changes to current law: first that some better way should be found to protect sites that want to moderate or check what appears on their sites (at the moment, doing so carries some legal risk that you may be liable for anything you miss); and second that where it’s not obvious whether content is illegal because it depends on external factors - defamation, copyright, etc., as opposed to malware or indecent images of children - it should be possible for the content provider to ask the host to put it back without the host becoming liable. This is currently done for copyright material in the US and was suggested for defamation in the UK.

Answers to the specific questions and discussion of the general approach would be very welcome, either in comments to this post or you can e-mail me if you don’t want your answers to be public. Comments received by August 17th will be taken into account in our response, thereafter it'll depend on how much time I have. I look forward to hearing from you, thanks