Senator Ricardo Monreal Ávila presented the initiative with a draft decree reforming and adding several provisions of the Federal Telecommunications and Radiofusion Law, where it is proposed to establish the bases and general principles for the protection of freedom of expression in social networks, The Federal Telecommunications Institute is given the necessary powers to guarantee the exercise of this human right in cyberspace and to establish clear limits for the owners of such accounts concerning the suspension and elimination of accounts, thus contributing to the legal security of users and service providers.
To this effect, Article 3 includes the definition of social network services and those relevant ones that have one million or more users. For this reason, it is considered that this type of social network is capable of generating a greater impact on social communication processes and the legal sphere of citizens. The purpose of this regulation is to limit the scope of protection only to those cases that can truly affect freedom of expression in social networks that have a large community such as Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, and Snapchat.
Likewise, the networks may establish mechanisms to suspend or remove accounts and content by terms previously authorized by the Federal Telecommunications Institute (IFT); it also establishes that only accounts and content that disseminate false news, express hate messages, affect the rights of minors, reveal personal data or provoke any crime may be removed or suspended.
On the other hand, social networks must have an internal procedure to challenge the suspension of accounts and content to be resolved within a maximum period of 24 hours and attended by specialists in human rights and freedom of expression. If the social networks do not resolve the challenge, a complaint about the violation of freedom of expression may be filed before the IFT, which will act as arbitrators between the parties.
If violations to freedom of expression are proven, fines of 89.62 million pesos, equivalent to 4.4 million dollars, are foreseen. Likewise, an obligation is imposed on individuals or legal entities that are providing social network services, which must request the Institute the authorization to provide the social network service within 15 business days from the entry into force of the guidelines and must submit for approval of the Institute the terms and conditions of the service.
Génesis Moyeda Salazar
Gloria Ponce de León & Hernández