The GDHRNet COST Action will systematically explore the theoretical and practical challenges posed by the online context to the protection of human rights. The network will address whether international human rights law is sufficiently detailed to enable governments and private online companies to understand their respective obligations vis-à-vis human rights protection online. It will evaluate how national governments have responded to the task of providing a regulatory framework for online companies and how these companies have transposed the obligation to protect human rights and combat hate speech online into their community standards. The matters of transparency and accountability will be explored, through the lens of corporate social responsibility.
The Action will propose a comprehensive system of human rights protection online, in the form of recommendations of the content assessment obligation by online companies, directed to the companies themselves, European and international policy organs, governments and the general public. The Action will also develop a model which minimises the risk of arbitrary assessment of online content and instead solidifies standards which are used during content assessment; and maximises the transparency of the outcome.
The Action will achieve scientific breakthroughs (a) by means of a quantitative and qualitative assessment of whether private Internet companies provide comparable protection of human rights online in comparison with judicial institutions, and (b) in the form of a novel holistic theoretical approach to the potential role of artificial intelligence in protecting human rights online, and (c) by providing policy suggestions for private balancing of fundamental rights online.