Debates about platform regulation often revolve around the big players like Google, Facebook and Twitter. However, it is worth looking at smaller and medium-sized platforms, says Christina Dinar in the BredowCast.
According to Christina Dinar
's definition, a platform is considered small or medium-sized if it has less than 2 million registered users in Germany. It is therefore not covered by the NetzDG and does not have to follow any legal guidelines for content moderation, but can go its own way.
Content moderation on smaller platforms tends to be more community-oriented and often functions (by necessity) on a voluntary basis, observes Christina Dinar. Moderators are usually an active part of the community themselves, which means that their decisions about content deletions, for example, are much more likely to be supported by the community than those made by an external authority, as is often the case on large platforms.
For Christina Dinar, the success of this community-based (self-)regulation is no surprise. Coming from the field of social work and education, she co-founded the concept of "digital street work", which transforms existing approaches to support services into a digital environment.
"A handful of social workers on the internet would replace many external content managers", believes Christina Dinar. They would address burgeoning conflicts within the community early on so that they do not boil up to the point where, for example, offensive content needs to be deleted. This is something that large platforms can learn from small ones when it comes to content moderation.
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Christina Dinar (Certified Pedagogue)
Leibniz Institute for Media Research | Hans-Bredow-Institut