The Online Safety Bill and Government crackdown on anonymity will punish victims 

Embargo: Immediate

Responding to the news of the Government’s announcement on introducing Identity Verification as part of the Online Safety Bill, the Executive Director of the Open Rights Group, Jim Killock, said: 

“This proposal would lead to a two tier Internet, where people who suffer abuse and use anonymity to shield themselves are actively discriminated against. LGBTQ, abuse survivors and many others use anonymity to prevent their identities from being revealed and from suffering real world consequences. It is deeply disturbing that the people who this bill seeks to protect will have real protection of anonymity removed from them.

“Unfortunately content does not come with a ‘legal but harmful’ label attached to it, so the idea that platforms can opt people out of such things is nonsense. What it will mean is people choosing whether algorithms block things that might be offensive, with the inevitable result that posts about ‘Scunthorpe’ or ‘garden hoes’ are removed in the name of safety.” 



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Notes to the Editor: 

[1]: Read our blog on why Government’s proposal on identity verification will punish victims: