Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) to Demand Misinformation Data from Big Tech Companies

The Australian government said Monday that it would introduce legislation this year demanding misinformation data from big tech companies, as it joins others worldwide in seeking to reduce the spread of harmful information online.

“The legislation will provide the Australian Communications and Media Authority (ACMA) with new regulatory powers to hold big tech companies to account for harmful content on their platforms,” the government said.

Communications Minister Paul Fletcher said the new powers for ACMA would be introduced to parliament in late 2022.

“Digital platforms must take responsibility for what is on their sites and take action when harmful or misleading content appears,” Fletcher added.

The legislation was a response to an ACMA investigation that found four-fifths of Australian adults had experienced misinformation about COVID-19.

Meanwhile, DIGI, an Australian industry body representing Facebook, Alphabet’s Google, Twitter, and video site TikTok, said it supported ACMA’s recommendations and had already set up a system to process complaints about misinformation.

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