Global Online Safety Regulators Network Media Release

Media Release

Embargoed until:
EST 17:00 / GMT 22:00 14 November 2022
AEDT 09:00 / FJT 10:00 15 November 2022

Regulators collaborate through new global network to counter online

Regulators from Australia, Fiji, Ireland and the United Kingdom are joining forces to
encourage and coordinate global efforts to make the online world a safer place.

The new Global Online Safety Regulators Network will be formally launched at the Family
Online Safety Institute Conference in Washington DC today.

The Network is a collaboration between the first movers in online safety regulation –
Australia’s eSafety Commissioner, Fiji’s Online Safety Commission and Ofcom in the UK –
with support from the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland.

The Network is intended to pave the way for a coherent international approach to online
safety regulation, by enabling new online safety regulators to share information, experience
and best practices. Members will share a commitment to act independently of commercial
and political influence, as well as to human rights, democracy and the rule of law

The Network is being set up at a time of rapid evolution in the global digital landscape and a
greater focus on online safety issues from governments, industry and citizens alike. This
includes recent legislative reforms like Australia’s Online Safety Act 2021, Fiji’s Online
Safety Act 2018, the UK’s Online Safety Bill, Ireland’s Online Safety and Media Regulation
Bill 2022 and the European Union’s Digital Services Act, as well as online safety reform work
underway in Canada, New Zealand and Singapore.

Senior representatives from the four founders of the Network said that with a number of
global online safety regulators now being established around the world, the time is right to
link up, learn from each other, and look at new ways of working together to counter a range
of online harms.

Quotes attributable to Network founders 

Julie Inman Grant, Australia’s eSafety Commissioner: 
“I’ve always believed the future of effective online safety regulation would involve a network
of global regulators working together to make the online world a safer place for everyone.
Today’s announcement is the first step in making that future a reality.

“In 2015, we were the world’s only online safety regulator. Today, I’m happy to report that
this is no longer the case and online safety regulators are starting to pop up all over the
globe, backed by new laws ensuring providers of digital services are held to account.

“Our new Network will also help to avoid the risk of a “global splinternet” of inconsistent
regulation by setting out a clearer and more consistent international framework for industry
to follow.”

Dame Melanie Dawes, Chief Executive, Ofcom, UK:
“Global companies don’t consider borders as barriers to their business models, and neither
should we when it comes to regulating them. If we’re going to help everyone from Melbourne
to Manchester enjoy a safer life online, countries need to collaborate and share their
experience and expertise. That’s why we’ve launched this Network.

“Ofcom has already shown that regulation can make a difference, after just one year of
oversight of UK video sites like TikTok, Snapchat and Twitch. We’re looking forward to
extending these powers so we can protect more people from serious harm while continuing
to champion the great things about being online. Strong global cooperation and consistency
will be key to that.”

Mary Motofaga, A/g Commissioner, Online Safety Commission, Fiji:
“For a Pacific country as geographically remote and culturally rich as Fiji, the Global Online
Safety Regulators Network offers a great opportunity for members to share information,
discuss and address challenges such as cross-border complaints and acknowledging
cultural diversity.

“Collaboration with our international stakeholders is crucial to achieving success because
the online space does not have any boundaries, and we are stronger together than apart.
“The Fijian Online Safety Commission looks forward to the launch of the Global Online
Safety Regulators Network as we work together to promote an inclusive and safe online
culture for all.”

Celene Craig, Chief Executive Officer, Broadcasting Authority of Ireland:
“The BAI has consistently pursued co-operation and partnership as tools in effective and
practical regulation. The development of the Global Online Safety Regulators Network is the
embodiment of this approach and the Network is committed to bringing together like-minded
independent regulators who are working together to foster best practice, share experiences
and expertise and co-ordinate regulatory approaches in the pursuit of a safe and equitable
online environment.

“While the BAI is not a regulator in online safety, it has contributed to this Network through
the online safety work it has undertaken regarding the transposition of the Audiovisual Media
Services Directive and the development of Ireland’s online safety and media regulation
regime. This work allows the BAI to have observer status in the Network.

“Online safety regulation in Ireland will soon come under the remit of a new body, Coimisiún
na Meán (the Media Commission) once the Online Safety and Media Regulation Bill is
enacted into law. We hope that the preparatory work the BAI has undertaken in the
development of this Network and the valuable interactions with regulators operating in the
online safety space will assist our specialist online safety colleagues when the work of
Coimisiún na Meán commences next year.”

Media contacts 
Australia’s eSafety Commissioner: or +61 439 519 684
Broadcasting Authority of Ireland: Joanne Ahern, or +353 87 9881837
Ofcom, United Kingdom: or +44 300 123 1795.
Online Safety Commission, Fiji: or +679 9906652


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