A new poll released by Ipsos has found that 84% of adults in the UK are concerned about harmful content online, while 68% want more action taken by social media platforms on hot button issues like racism, homophobia, self-harm and misogyny on their platforms.
Over a third (38%) of those polled said they had seen content of this nature online in the last month. The study, commissioned by the UK government and carried out by Ipsos, polled the opinions of 1140 adults in June, asking them their opinions on issues related to online safety as the government prepares to move forward with its Online Safety Bill.
Introduced in March, this bill moved to the report stage in Parliament this week. Its intention is to protect children, tackle illegal content and protect free speech online, as well as put pressure on social media platforms to uphold their stated terms and conditions.
According to the Ipsos study, 78% of adults want social media companies to be clear about what sort of content is and isn’t allowed on their platform. In a stark warning to social media companies, 45% of respondents said they would leave or reduce the amount of time they spend on their platforms if they see no action.
“Online abuse has a devastating impact on people’s lives, and these findings definitively show the public back our plans which will force social media companies to step up in keeping their users safe,” said Nadine Dorries, UK Digital Secretary.
“It is clear people across the UK are worried about this issue, and as our landmark Online Safety Bill reaches the next crucial stage in Parliament, we’re a big step closer to holding tech giants to account and making the internet safer for everyone in our country.”
Under the terms of the new bill, industry regulator Ofcom will have the power to fine companies up to 10% of their annual global turnover to force them to fulfill their responsibilities or even block non-compliant sites. Read more: https://bit.ly/3axJAgC
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