In a surprising move, media company, CNN disables their Facebook page amid the new Australian High Court order that happened earlier in the month. The company stated that they had no choice and that their hand was forced due to the new legislation.
Earlier in the month, Australian High Court ruled that media companies are to be held liable for the comment that are under their posts. More specifically, they are responsible for the derogatory and defamatory comments that users leave under their posts. While the court ruling happened earlier in the month, approximately the 8th of September, we are just seeing the effects of the ruling now. While companies have the ability the disable comments, this doesn’t promote the ability to engage with your audience.
The discussion started when a young 17 year old Dylan Voller was jailed and put into a youth correctional facility. The teen was put all over the media and this also included how the teen was treated. Pictures of him strapped to a chair with a bag over his head created an outrage that gained more news coverage. Voller ended up suing multiple Australian news companies for the vulgar comments that were left under Facebook posts due to the fact that he was arrested rather than the comments about him being mistreated.
However, media companies are not the only victims of the High Court’s judgment. According to legal experts, not only can news outlets be held liable for their readers’ defamatory comments, but any social media user in Australia can be held liable for comments on their posts if they encourage other users to engage with their content.https://itif.org/publications/2021/09/16/australian-high-court-ruling-threatens-social-media-and-online-news