The Global Network Initiative Supports Argentina’s Draft Intermediary Liability Law

En Español

The Global Network Initiative (GNI) welcomes the Draft Law on the responsibility of Internet intermediaries and encourages the Chamber of Deputies to pass it as drafted, and the Office of the President to sign it into law.  GNI is pleased to add our support for the Draft Law to the long list of diverse experts and stakeholders that have already endorsed it. If enacted, the Draft Law will provide a clear and fair process, governed by the rule of law, regarding the responsibility of internet intermediaries for online content of users, thereby facilitating innovation and investment in the expansion of relevant services. [1] The law would also protect and foster freedom of expression and address unlawful online content, consistent with the Consitution of Argentina and Argentina’s international commitments.  The Draft Law is based on the Supreme Court of Argentina’s ruling that releases intermediaries from liability for the content of third party users of their services.

The Draft Law would serve as an important precedent and benchmark regionally and globally. At a time of dialogs and efforts among governments and other stakeholders on protecting freedom of expression and addressing unlawful content online, this Draft Law presents Argentina with an opportunity to continue to demonstrate leadership on matters of Internet policy and human rights. As the United Nations and Organization of American States (OAS) Special Rapporteurs on freedom of expression have noted, the provisions of this law are clearly consistent with international human rights law. [2]  Passage of the law would, therefore, help implement Argentina’s existing international law commitments and reinforce the principles that undergird its participation in important multilateral organizations, such as the Freedom Online Coalition.[3] It would also ensure that Argentina’s legal framework reflects international best practice, as reflected in recommendations by the OAS, the UN Human Rights Council, UNESCO, the Council of Europe, and the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). [4]

The Draft Law will also demonstrate how freedom of expression can help to promote innovation and economic opportunity. Enabling a safe harbor and judicial notice and takedown system will not only help to protect the rights of users, but also bring significant economic benefits for Argentina’s Internet economy. [5]

GNI is a unique, multi-stakeholder organization composed of leading Information and Communications Technology (ICT) companies, civil society organizations, socially responsible investors, and academics.  Our members work to forge a common approach to protecting and advancing freedom of expression and privacy online. GNI has developed a set of Principles and Implementation Guidelines, which guide responsible company action on addressing requests from governments around the world that could impact the freedom of expression and privacy rights of users. GNI is the only multi-stakeholder initiative with a specific focus on freedom of expression and privacy in the ICT sector.

References:

[1] Including civil society organizations (https://www.accessnow.org/organizaciones-argentinas-apoyan-proyecto-de-intermediarios-en-internet/), telecom companies (http://asiet.lat/notas-de-prensa/gsma-asiet-apoyan-proyecto-ley-establece-la-limitacion-responsabilidad-los-proveedores-acceso-internet-respecto-los-contenidos-generados-los-usuarios/); and Internet companies (http://www.cabase.org.ar/dictamen-favorable-para-el-proyecto-de-ley-que-regula-la-responsabilidad-de-los-intermediarios-de-internet/)

[2] https://www.ohchr.org/Documents/Issues/Opinion/Legislation/OL-ARG-1-2018.pdf

[3] https://freedomonlinecoalition.com/underpinning-documents/

[4] See, e.g., http://www.oas.org/en/iachr/expression/docs/reports/internet/foe_and_internet_report_2013.pdfhttp://ec.europa.eu/transparency/regexpert/index.cfm?do=groupDetail.groupDetailDoc&id=32321&no=8; http://ec.europa.eu/transparency/regexpert/index.cfm?do=groupDetail.groupDetailDoc&id=32321&no=8; http://unesdoc.unesco.org/images/0023/002311/231162e.pdf; and https://www.oecd.org/sti/ieconomy/oecd-principles-for-internet-policy-making.pdf

[5]See, e.g., https://cdn1.internetassociation.org/wp-content/uploads/2017/06/Economic-Value-of-Internet-Intermediaries-the-Role-of-Liability-Protections.pdf