Social media – opportunities, rights and responsibilities – WS 06 2020

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11 June 2020 | 14:30-16:00 | Studio Trieste
Consolidated programme 2020 overview / Day 1

Proposals: #20, #27, #56, #77, #90, #99, #108, #112, #125, #139, #167 (#5, #12, #16, #18, #28, #34, #186)

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Session teaser

Thanks to the social media, everybody now can bypass traditional gatekeepers and – trading one’s personal data for access – enjoy one’s seemingly unfettered freedom of expression in the digital public space. But when does personal freedom end and personal responsibility begins? The session will facilitate a discussion on the limitations and pitfalls of freedom of speech on the Internet.

Session description

Especially in the time of COVID-19, people are using the internet and online services more now than ever before. As schools close and people are confined to their homes, being online is providing a lifeline for everyone in society from the young to the old, learners and workers, and the vulnerable, curious and those seeking an escape from boredom.

Social networking services - perhaps now more than ever - play an important part in people’s daily lives. While they serve as a way to connect, discuss and share people’s ideas, the fact that they can be accessed by anyone gives more room of action to malicious actors. Among others, this might result in issues such as hate speech, cyberbullying and disinformation. To contrast these actions, governments are utilizing sophisticated technology (e.g. AI) to monitor citizens’ behavior on social media, but this could result in mass surveillance on social media, which represents a threat for both authoritarian and democratic governments. As human rights protected offline (speech, expression, aggregation) should also be protected online (Tallinn Manual), the future of our online freedom depends on our ability to ensure that citizens’ online rights are respected.

This session will be organized in a facilitated multi-stakeholder dialogue with representatives from governments, technical community, civil society and academia to discuss opportunities, challenges as well as rights and responsibilities of social media platforms and its users.


The workshop will be divided in three parts, each lasting approximately 30 minutes. At the beginning of each part a specific case study or latest research findings will be presented by representatives from the academic and civil society sector. Following each case presentation, representatives from the public sector and tech industry will act as respondent, giving a short statement. This approach will initiate a facilitated dialogue led by the moderator who will also open the floor to the audience for intervention after each part. In addition, a second moderator will facilitate comments and questions that will be posted in the chat throughout the whole session.

Further reading

Links to relevant websites, declarations, books, documents. Please note we cannot offer web space, so only links to external resources are possible. Example for an external link: Website of EuroDIG


Until .

Please provide name and institution for all people you list here.

Focal Point

  • Sabrina Vorbau
  • Joachim Kind

Organising Team (Org Team) List them here as they sign up.

  • Elena Perotti
  • Narine Khachatryan
  • Amali De Silva-Mitchell
  • Ruth Cookman
  • Nertil Berdufi
  • Oliana Sula
  • Anna Romandash
  • Abhilash Nair
  • Bissera Zankova
  • Federica Casarosa
  • Sofia Badari
  • Carola Croll
  • Debora Cerro Fernandez
  • Zoey Barthelemy
  • Aleksandra Ivanković
  • Jörn Erbguth
  • Giacomo Mazzone
  • João Pedro Martins

Key Participants

  • Nertil Bërdufi, Assistant professor at University College Beder and Founder and Director of Beder Legal Clinic

Mr. Nertil Bërdufi is an experienced lecturer and lawyer with a demonstrated history of working in the legal services based in Tirana, Albania. He is the founder and Director of the Legal Clinic at University College Bedër. He is also external evaluation expert at the Quality Assurance Agency of the Higher Education and trainer in different projects in the field of countering violent extremism (CVE), Cybercrime, International Law and Dispute Resolution. Nertil has a PhD in Cybercrime and National security and an LLM in Rule of Law for Development from Loyola University Chicago, School of Law. He is a regular participant and Org Team member at EuroDIG since 2016.

  • Tanja Pavleska, Researcher Laboratory for Open Systems and Networks, Jozef Stefan Institute

Dr. Tanja Pavleska is a researcher at Jozef Stefan Institute and Chair of the Slovenian Internet Society Chapter. Her background is in electrical engineering. Her research is focused on trust and cybersecurity management, digital policies, social media regulatory frameworks and information governance. She is currently involved in the enterprise architecture design in the Digital Europe for All (DE4All) project and the work on user-centric cybersecurity in the CONCORDIA project. For the past 3 years, she has been leading the work on social media policies and regulatory frameworks in the COMPACT project

  • Liz Corbin, Deputy Media Director and Head of News for the European Broadcasting Union (EBU)

Liz Corbin in the Deputy Director of Media and Head of News at the European Broadcasting Union. She oversees the Eurovision News and Sports Exchange, the Social Newswire, the News Events broadcast services team and Radio News. Prior to joining the EBU in January 2020, Liz worked at the BBC for 18 years, most recently as the Head of News at the international channel BBC World News. Previous roles include the Editor of BBC Reality Check where she oversaw a large expansion in the team. She was also the Singapore Bureau Editor for 4 years.

  • Charlotte Altenhöner-Dion, Council of Europe, Head of Internet Governance Unit and Secretary to the Expert Committee on Freedom of Expression and Digital Technologies (MSI-DIG)

Charlotte has a law degree from Hamburg University and an LL.M. in International Law from Georgetown University. She has been with the Council of Europe for the past ten years, having previously worked for the OSCE and the UN, including in Central Asia, the Balkans, and East Africa. Her current professional focus lies on the human rights impacts of digital transformation, intermediary liability, and the institutional challenges of governing fast-moving technologies in a human rights-compliant manner, while adhering to the principles of democracy and the rule of law.

  • Paolo Cesarini, Head of Unit Media Convergence & Social Media, DG CONNECT, European Commission (EC)

Paolo Cesarini is head of the unit responsible for media convergence and social media policy at the European Commission, DG Communication Networks, Content and Technology since 2017. He previously held other management positions in the Commission, including in DG Competition. He also worked as a member of the legal service at the International Labour Organization in Geneva, Switzerland, and as a researcher at the Institute for Public and International Law of Siena University, Italy. He has been teaching EU competition law as visiting professor at Siena University, and as lecturer at Montpellier University, France. He obtained a master degree in international law at Siena University and an LLM in EU law at the College of Europe, Belgium.


  • Sabrina Vorbau, Project Manager at European Schoolnet

Sabrina Vorbau is Project Manager at European Schoolnet and has been a member of its Digital Citizenship Team since 2014. She is involved in a variety of online safety projects such as Better Internet for Kids (BIK), the eSafety Label and SELMA (Social and Emotional Learning for Mutual Awareness). As part of BIK she is coordinating the BIK Youth activities and the annual Pan-European Youth Panel. In addition, she recently started managing the H2020 project CO:RE – Children Online: Research and Evidence - developing a knowledge base on children and youth in the digital world. Originally, from Germany, Sabrina holds a Master’s degree in Applied Economic Sciences: Business Administration (MBA) from the University of Antwerp. Prior to joining EUN, she worked at the European Agency for Fundamental Rights in Vienna.

  • Abhilash Nair, Senior Lecturer in Internet Law at Aston Law School

Abhilash Nair is based at Aston University Law School, Birmingham, where he is Director of the Internet Law and Emerging Technologies (ILET) research unit. He is an internationally recognised expert on child online safety laws and has advised various international and national bodies on regulating illegal and harmful content, online child sexual abuse material, and content-related cybercrime. He has published widely on aspects of internet law and regulation, and has been a regular speaker at international conferences and panels focusing on internet safety. His recent book titled 'The Regulation of Internet Pornography: Issues and Challenges' (Routledge) examines how the internet has necessitated a fundamental change in the regulation of pornography. Abhilash is a member of the Evidence Working Group of the UK Council for Internet Safety (UKCIS) and has previously served as a member of the Technology Law and Practice Committee of the Law Society of Scotland. He has significant experience of contributing to both broadcast and print outlets including the BBC News channel, Victoria Derbyshire (BBC2/BBC News), BBC Radio 5 Live, BBC Asian Network, various BBC Local Radio stations, the Economic Times and the Conversation.

Remote Moderator

Trained remote moderators will be assigned on the spot by the EuroDIG secretariat to each session.


Reporters will be assigned by the EuroDIG secretariat in cooperation with the Geneva Internet Platform. The Reporter takes notes during the session and formulates 3 (max. 5) bullet points at the end of each session that:

  • are summarised on a slide and presented to the audience at the end of each session
  • relate to the particular session and to European Internet governance policy
  • are forward looking and propose goals and activities that can be initiated after EuroDIG (recommendations)
  • are in (rough) consensus with the audience

Current discussion, conference calls, schedules and minutes

See the discussion tab on the upper left side of this page. Please use this page to publish:

  • dates for virtual meetings or coordination calls
  • short summary of calls or email exchange

Please be as open and transparent as possible in order to allow others to get involved and contact you. Use the wiki not only as the place to publish results but also to summarize the discussion process.


A short summary of the session will be provided by the Reporter.

Video record

Will be provided here after the event.


Will be provided here after the event.