France Accuses Internet Archive of Hosting Terrorist Content

The French Internet Referral Unit sent 550 takedown demands to the Internet Archive claiming that it hosts “terrorist propaganda” (via Internet Archive).

[Dutch Apple Investigation Compliments EU’s Look at Spotify Complaint]

Takedown Notices

At least 500 URLs were falsely identified by the French ICU as terrorist propaganda. And this was just in the past week. These include:

  • Major collection pages
  • Scholarly articles
  • U.S. Government-produced broadcasts and reports
  • User-posted materials

The latest takedown notice was an article providing commentary on the Quran, which the French ICU says includes “provocation of acts of terrorism or apology for such acts.”

The Internet Archive has a few staff members that process takedown notices from law enforcement who operate in the Pacific time zone. Most of the falsely identified URLs mentioned here (including the report from the French government) were sent to us in the middle of the night – between midnight and 3am Pacific – and all of the reports were sent outside of the business hours of the Internet Archive.

The one-hour requirement essentially means that we would need to take reported URLs down automatically and do our best to review them after the fact.

Would I be valid in creating a headline like, “France Accuses the Quran of Inciting Terrorism?” I think the EU’s Terrorist Content Regulation needs some work. Not to mention Article 13 that bans memes and that politicians claimed they passed by mistake.

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