A new law requiring online platforms such as Facebook to take down objectionable content within 24 hours poses a disproportionate risk to freedom of expression, France’s Constitutional Council has ruled. But the ruling leaves intact the body of French law that prohibits hate speech, a category that includes racial slurs, denial of the Holocaust, and incitement to violence.

The Avia Law was passed with the intent to fine social media platforms that allow content such as child pornography, terrorism, or genocide denial if they do not remove the content within 24 hours. It was inspired by similar anti-hate speech laws throughout Europe and Africa. 

Despite the court’s support of the Avia Law’s goals, most of the law was still declared unconstitutional. The court stressed that “Freedom of expression and communication is all the more precious since its exercise is a condition of democracy,” because that privilege “guarantees respect [for] other rights and freedoms.

Source- New York Times

By- M. Soujanya