News News from Hungary Government preparing regulation of social media giants in Hungary

Government preparing regulation of social media giants in Hungary

The justice ministry is preparing draft legislation to regulate the operation of social media giants in Hungary, Justice Minister Judit Varga said on Facebook on Tuesday.

The aim is “legal, transparent and controllable operation”, Varga said in her bilingual post, adding that the regulation binding all other economic players should apply to tech giants too.

While Hungary is cooperating in preparing similar legislation in the European Union, “recent events have shown that we need to act faster to defend people,” she said.

“Today, everyone can be arbitrarily switched off from the online space without any official, transparent and fair proceeding and legal remedy,” she added. This goes for state leaders as well as private individuals, she said.

Causing “digital damage” deliberately, whether for ideological or business-related reasons, should have repercussions in Hungary, Varga said. The bill will be submitted to parliament in the spring, Varga said.

As we wrote two weeks before, Minister Varga said that she shared German Chancellor Angela Merkel’s view that the locking of US President Donald Trump’s user account by Twitter was reason for concern.

Also we wrote last week, she has called an extraordinary meeting of the Digital Freedom Committee tasked with monitoring online space over what she says are violations of democratic norms by tech giants.