United Kingdom

[GB] Ofcom launches second call for evidence as part of future role online safety regulator

IRIS 2023-3:1/15

Eric Munch

European Audiovisual Observatory

On 10 January 2023, Ofcom published a call for evidence regarding matters anticipated to be included in their second consultation, scheduled for publication in autumn 2023 on the topic of the protection of children from legal content that is harmful to them.

As part of Ofcom’s future role set out by the Online Safety Bill – still at report stage in the House of Commons at the moment of launching the call for evidence – as online safety regulator, Ofcom will publish codes of practice setting out the measures that platforms can take to protect children online and guidance regarding how platforms should assess the risks of harm to children. This call for evidence – in addition to the results of the first call for evidence published on 6 July 2022 – will help Ofcom in the preparation of the abovementioned codes of practice and guidance, in addition to providing valuable information to be used in the context of their media literacy work.

The call for evidence is directed towards stakeholders with an interest or expertise in protecting children online, with a focus on:

- draft guidance on how services should conduct a child’s access assessment;

- draft guidance on how services likely to be accessed by children are to undertake their children’s risk assessment;

- draft guidance on how services hosting online pornographic content can comply with their duties to ensure that children cannot normally access that content;

- draft codes of practice explaining how services can comply with their duties to protect children from harmful content.

The call for evidence is scheduled to remain open for 10 weeks from publication, until 21 March 2023.


This article has been published in IRIS Legal Observations of the European Audiovisual Observatory.