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Tilburg Law and Economics Center

TILEC supports and stimulates academic research on the governance of economic activity. It fosters academically path breaking and practically relevant research and aims to be a leading center worldwide.

TILEC Work in Progress: Lenka Fiala and Martin Husovec

Using Experimental Evidence to Design Optimal Notice and Takedown Process
10:45-11:45, M 1003

In January 2008, a YouTube channel dedicated to political commentary, released a video commenting on the way Fox News purposefully cut, then-candidate Barack Obama, in his speech. In its video commentary, it included a short and permitted snippet of a song used in the candidate's campaign. Despite this, when the song's right holder notified YouTube, the video was taken down. The channel immediately tried to dispute allegations of a copyright infringement by means of a counter-notice; to no avail. YouTube effectively refused to reinstate the video. The content was permanently blocked. 

This is not an isolated story. Google alone blocked more than 2 billion links since 2011. In a single month, Twitter suspended 235,000 accounts for allegations of extremism. Whether it is copyright infringement, hate speech or terrorist content, internet intermediaries are expected to act as agents by essentially doing the government's job -- enforcing the law. Empirical evidence shows that such delegated enforcement often leads to systemic over-blocking of lawful content which in turn damages digital business ecosystem. The question is, how to counter this trend?

We re-create the existing problem of online over-enforcement within the current notice & takedown system in a laboratory, and test a mechanism to address both the overcompliance of providers with notice & takedown, and the insufficient response of users of the platform.

When: 07 March 2018 10:45

End date: 07 March 2018 11:45

Where: Montesquieu building