Berlin: Facebook has increased its efforts to avoid strict regulations in Germany as the country is a strong critic of the social media platform and the abundance of hate speech and fake news circulated on it.
Sheryl Sandberg, the COO of Facebook and the second most powerful executive after Mark Zuckerberg came to Berlin on Sunday and met with government officials of Germany regarding the new regulations on Facebook.
Facebook also announced on Sunday that they have partnered with a German third-party-fact checking organization. Sheryl Sandberg had said that Facebook cannot find and delete all the pages with fake news and hate speech and it has to rely on third parties.
Sheryl Sandberg said: “We don’t want to decide what the truth is, and I don’t believe anyone wants us to do that. “When we say that we can’t take it on ourselves, that doesn’t mean that we don’t want to take any responsibility. We do take responsibility.”
Volker Kauder, a senior lawmaker has also demanded that social media platforms should also provide information about the people who spread hate news and fake news if the authorities ask for them. He told media:
“They say there is too much. But a big auto manufacturer that produces millions of cars can’t say: ‘I produce so many cars that I can’t guarantee they are all secure.’ No, that is not on. I expect and demand from Facebook that laws are upheld.”
A new legislation is being planned by lawmakers in Germany which will force Facebook to delete pages spreading fake news and hate speech within 24 hours of being noticed. Otherwise it will face fines, this legislation is an effort to force the social media giant to take more responsibility.
The German Chancellor Angela Merkel has decided to run for the fourth time and the German government is worried about the effects of fake news and racist rhetoric on social media, especially regarding the nearly 1 million refugees would impact the election campaign.
Last year Germany made Twitter, Google and Facebook to sign a code of conduct which included the clause that all fake news, hate speech and racist comments will be deleted within 24 hours of notification. European Union also adopted a same code of conduct voluntarily.