NRIs Collaborative Session on harmful content online

NRIs Collaborative Session: Addressing online harmful content

Theme: Security, Safety, Stability & Resilience 

Sub-theme: Internet Ethics; Human Rights; Encryption; Fake News; Freedom of Expression Online; Hate Speech

Policy Questions: 

  • How can risks of contact and content be addressed successfully by legal and regulatory approaches as well as by technical instruments and how can digital civility be increased?
  • What role should Internet platforms play in defining the standards for acceptable content in light of freedom of speech?
  • How can globally accepted standards be developed?
  • What kind of collaboration could be created among Internet platforms and media outlets to fight disinformation and fake news?
  • Where is the middle ground between increasing demands for proactive content policing by digital platforms and the necessary neutrality and legal certainty for platforms?

Relevance to Theme and Internet Governance: Propaganda, disinformation and misinformation are present on many online services and massively accessible to users with an instant reach. Content related to terrorism, child abuse and self-harm is of particular concern for many communities.

Many national and regional legal mechanism are reinforcing or introducing the right to be informed. This result in having an unharmonized standardization and different approaches of national and regional systems toward respecting the free speech on the Internet. Also, more and more countries develop national policies and laws for making the online services responsible for not removing the harmful content on the Internet, despite not authoring it or directly posting it on their platforms.

Description: This session will focus on concrete case study examples of what is considered to be the harmful content on the Internet and related concerns for involved countries and regions, what has been done so far in regard to addressing these and providing solutions. All participants will focus on modes of digital cooperation for the safe and secure Internet.

Format of the Session: Interactive roundtable discussion

Expected Outcomes:  The session aims to showcase concrete issues local communities have related to online content, and will produce a set of concrete messages on what are the issues and how to potentially resolve them.

Discussion Facilitation: The moderator will follow the agreed set of policy and will allow for introductory, case study remarks by the NRIs speakers. This will be followed by engaging other present participants into developing an interactive discussion.

Online participation: A dedicated online moderator will be placed next to the onsite moderator. All participants will be using the online speaking queue to be treated equally in their requests for interventions. All input presentation will be made available at the IGF website and links will be shared via the online tool.


  1. Japan IGF
  2. Armenia IGF
  3. Bolivia IGF
  4. Nepal IGF
  5. Cameroon IGF*
  6. France IGF
  7. Kenya IGF
  8. Lebanon IGF
  9. IGF-USA
  10. Nigeria IGF
  11. EuroDIG
  12. Italian IGF

Speakers: Speakers to be delegated through an open, bottom-up process by the NRIs multistakeholder organizing committees.

Connection to SDGs: