Internet Intermediaries – from Defamation to Directive to Data Protection

This event took place at the Information Law and Policy Centre at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies on Thursday, 5 October 2017.

Thursday 5 October 2017
Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, 17 Russell Square, London WC1B 5DR


In 1997, Lawrence Godfrey asked Demon Internet to take down a Usenet post on the grounds that it was defamatory, kickstarting a process that led to the famous decisions of Morland J in Godfrey v Demon Internet, interpreting s 1 Defamation Act 1996. In 2007, the European Commission published its major study on the liability of intermediaries, taking stock of developments since the 2000 E-Commerce Directive, at EU level and within Member States. In 2017, as the UK prepares to leave the European Union, the role of the intermediary is still under scrutiny. Whether it be tackling abuse and harassment on social media, preventing minors from accessing sexually explicit material, revising the scope of regulating audiovisual media services, or reforms to data protection law, Parliament and Government are considering, time and time again, placing new duties on intermediaries – often requirements to act or report or co-operate rather than a full-blown imposition of liability. What, then, is the legal position of the intermediary, and how might it change in the coming years?

Speaker Details:

Dr Daithí Mac Síthigh, Professor of Law and Innovation at Queen’s University Belfast

Professor Lorna Woods, University of Essex and Senior Associate Research Fellow, Institute of Advanced Legal Studies

James Michael, Chair of Information Law & Policy Centre Advisory Board & Senior Associate Research Fellow, Institute of Advanced Legal Studies

This event is free but advance booking is required.  All welcome.