EU Court of Justice: EU Member State courts can instruct Facebook to delete illegal posts, including insults
Courts in the European Union's Member States can instruct Facebook to delete any posts by any users of the global social network that break the law. The European Court of Justice has ruled that this also includes the power to instruct Facebook to delete offensive comments similar to the illegal post.
The Court of Justice made the finding when ruling on a case brought by the former federal spokeswoman of the Green Party in Austria, Eva Glawischnig-Pieszczek, who had demanded Facebook remove a post that an Austrian court had ruled defamatory and insulting because any user of the social network worldwide was able to see it. The Court of Justice has ruled that companies like Facebook, according to the EU Directive on Electronic Commerce, are not liable for the data users upload to their services - unless they learn that it breaks the law.
Domestic courts in the EU are authorized to instruct Facebook to stop illegal behavior and to either remove such data or restrict access to it. Glawischnig-Pieszczek's legal representative told the Austrian Press Agency that the judgment is a "milestone in combating hatred" on the Internet.
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