21. February 2020

S01E02 Digital Platform | Lunch event

Digital Platform Combating hate speech, safeguarding freedom of expression

Season 1 | Episode #02

3 MARCH 2020

13:15-14:30, EU Parliament, Room JAN 6Q2


UPDATE: A livestream will be here https://web-greensefa.streamovations.be/index.php/event/stream/combating-hate-speech-safeguarding-freedom-of-expression


A free and open internet offers many opportunities – we can connect and communicate globally, we have unprecedented access to information and culture. However, it can also be used to spread hateful messages – that are often amplified online.


For example, organised groups mostly of the far-right spectrum are using social networks to spread hatred against women, people of colours, Muslims or LGBTI activists. This undermines the freedom of expression of the targeted groups, increases self-censorship and threatens people’s safety and freedom in the physical world.


Given the inadequacy of tools for users themselves to push back, it is no surprise that policy makers have been looking to internet intermediaries to take more action. However, whenever big tech companies – whose business model is often at the root of the problem – take voluntary actions outside the rule of law, the danger arises that they consolidate already existing market powers and that non-discrimination, free speech and privacy rights are being undermined.


In view of the upcoming reform of the e-Commerce rules in the form of the Digital Services Act, this panel discussion therefore tackles the difficult issue of regulating online hate speech: how can we make sure that illegal content is taken down rapidly while ensuring judicial procedures and redress mechanisms? What other measures exist to combat hate speech effectively?




Please register by 26 February via email to alexandra[dot]geese[ät]europarl.europa.eu – please indicate clearly if you need accreditation to the EU Parliament. In this case we will need from you: the last name and first name, date of birth, nationality, and type and number of official identity document (ID card or passport).


The meeting for external participants will be at 12:30  inside the Atrium Welcome Point.


A light sandwich lunch will be provided.


• Alexandra Geese, MEP, Greens/EFA, on Twitter she is @alexandra_geese

• Magdalena Adamowicz, MEP, EPP, on Twitter she is @adamowicz_magda



• Asha Allen, Policy and Campaigns Officer at the European Women’s Lobby, on Twitter she is @EuropeanWomen

• Ulf Buermeyer, Co-Founder of Gesellschaft für Freiheitsrechte and former judge at the court of Berlin, on Twitter he is @vieuxrenard

• Tommaso Chiamparino, DG Justice, European Commission; Coordinator on combating anti-Muslim hatred, on twitter he is @tommaseu


This is the second episode in the event series DIGITAL PLATFORM launched by MEP Alexandra Geese. This regular lunch event aims at bringing together policy experts, policy-makers and academics for insight and discussion on the latest developments in the area of platform and digital services regulation. The hashtag is #EUDigitalPlatform.

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