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UK's Online Safety Bill becomes law

by on27 October 2023

Almost certain to be ignored

The UK's Online Safety Bill, an overreaching law designed to be evaded and ignore by everyone was signed into law today.

The country's Conservative Party drafted the law and many of them who are so old that they think that most computers sit in huge rooms controlled by a man who must wear a bow tie.  They think that the law will make the country "the safest place in the world to be online", something which can be only aspired so far by countries like China and Iran, which have similar failed setups. 

The bill insists that kids should not have access to online pornography, "anonymous trolls" are banned along with scam ads, and the nonconsensual sharing of intimate deepfakes. It also claims to stop the spread of child sexual abuse material and terrorism-related content.

Although it's now law, online platforms will not need to immediately comply with all of their duties under the bill, which is now known as the Online Safety Act. UK telecoms regulator Ofcom, which oversees enforcing the rules, plans to publish its codes of practice in three phases.

The first covers how platforms will have to respond to illegal content like terrorism and child sexual abuse material, and consultation with proposals on how to handle these duties will be published on 9 November.  This first phase should be straightforward because it is completely illegal now and has been for years.

Other phases might be tricker to enforce as they are easier to evade with some basic technological knowledge. Anyone who thinks they can stop a teen geek from watching online porn has clearly never lived in the real world.


Last modified on 27 October 2023
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