ავტორი : ნინა შენგელია 27/05/2022
Internet is part of our daily lives and we live in a digitalized world. Social Media usage has increased rapidly during the outbreak of Covid 19 in 2019, as due to imposed lockdowns, users started spending more time online. Social media is plagued with content containing disinformation, misinformation and hate speech. In the first half of 2020, Facebook has removed 3.3 billion pieces of fake or misleading content. “Disinformation” and “Hate Speech” are the most contested categories on social media as is difficult to agree on a universal definition of these terms.
This article discusses problems faced by fragile and unconsolidated democracies on social media and how human rights are often violated at the expense of protection afforded to online free speech. Georgia has been selected as a case country because it has a deeply polarised society which is further ruptured by disinformation circulating on social media. The Article analyses online disinformation data from Georgia, where Facebook is actively used by more than 75% of the adult population, discusses types of disinformation fed to digital society and how it poses a threat to internet users’ human rights. Furthermore, the Article also analyzes the regulatory framework in place at the transnational level to combat disinformation as well as self-regulatory mechanisms adopted by social media platforms on the example of Facebook’s Oversight Board. In the end, the article identifies media literacy as the key instrument in battling online disinformation in Georgia.