The Dark Side

The dark side of UGC sites is beginning to get the attention of the media. Inevitably, users will go to extremes with what they can post on services such as YouTube with schoolyard fights, bullying, violence and 'happy slapping' become a staple on this and other services. There's a something 'modern media meets Lord of the Flies' about all of this and, even though I'm firmly against censorship, surely it has become time for the authorities to require UGC sites to be regulated and moderated in just the same way as broadcast television.

The EU's recent 'Television Without Frontiers' proposal does the opposite - it requires moderated services online to be scheduled but leaves UGC sites to anarchy. The lawmakers are more out of touch than ever and it's taken the British police to highlight this situation.