Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport Matt Hancock said on Wednesday that the government would consider adding warning labels to social media sites, which would indicate that sites can be harmful in the same way that cigarette packets currently carry labels.
Hancock gave evidence to the Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee about fake news and what plans the government had for legislation around technology companies.
Giles Watling, one of the members of the committee suggested to Hancock that the government introduce warning labels for social media sites so that the people using them would be aware of the risks.
Hancock said “we’ll consider that as part of the internet safety strategy.” Later on the session he said that the idea of warning labels was “worth looking at.”
Elsewhere in the session, Hancock was asked about the possibility of the government introducing legislation to deal with issues such as fake news on social media sites. “We don’t rule out legislation,” Hancock said.
One committee member suggested that the UK could follow a similar approach to Germany, which recently introduced laws restricting hate speech on social media. But Hancock disagreed. “I’m not a fan of doing it exactly as they’ve done in Germany,” he said. “I think we take a different approach in Britain partly due to our history and our culture.”