26 Jan, 2021

Vestager: democracy needs to catch up with technology but remain as leading force

On 22 January, the Liberal International and ALDE Party member Radikale Venstre (Denmark) joined forces to launch a campaign with the goal of strengthening human rights in the area of digitalisation.

As part of this new campaign, European Commission Executive Vice-President Margrethe Vestager and Rappler CEO Maria Ressa took part in a webinar where they shared their views on topics such as online disinformation and digital services. The discussion was moderated by Liberal International Human Rights Committee Chair Astrid Thors.

In her intervention, Vestager pointed out the importance of focusing on both online and offline violations of human rights and shared with the audience the work that Europe has been doing to address these issues, including the launch of GDPR and the Digital Services Act. She reminded that responsibility and accountability must be at the core of all efforts to ensure that democracy catches up with technology but remains as the leading force.

“Democracy needs open public spaces where everyone feels that they can come up with their opinion,” she said.

When referring to the lack of a global government to regulate the activities of big tech platforms, Vestager stressed that cooperation with global authorities is key to address the issues that might emerge and to ensure that states do not get too much power. To this end, she underlined the empowerment work that liberals around the world have been doing to ensure the full respect of human rights in the digital era. Vestager also highlighted the need for everyone to be able to shape their own opinion without being influenced by false information.

To learn more about the campaign, visit here

Watch the event here or below

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