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Algorithms should not control what people see, UN chief says as he launches Global Principles on Information Integrity

UN Secretary General António Guterres outlines key recommendations aimed at making the information space safer, while upholding human rights such as freedom of expression.

“At a time when billions of people are subjected to false narratives, distortions and lies, These principles set out a clear path forward, rooted in human rightsincluding freedom of speech and opinion,” he said.

The Secretary-General called on governments, technology companies, advertisers and the public relations (PR) industry to take responsibility for the spread and monetization of harmful content.

Harming our world

He emphasized that combating misinformation and hate speech is critical to protecting democracy, human rights, public health and climate action.

The spread of hatred and lies online is causing serious harm to our world,he say, Address the media at the United Nations headquarters in New York.

The UN chief added that the UN’s humanitarian and peacekeeping operations are at risk as the organization’s staff face a “tsunami of falsehoods” and “theories”. absurd conspiracy”.

False narratives and lies create mistrust and undermine social cohesion and sustainable development.

Opaque algorithm

He affirmed that people should freely express themselves without fear of attack and be able to access diverse opinions and information.

No one should have to depend on an algorithm they do not control, which is not designed to protect their interests.and track their behavior to collect personal data and keep them hooked,” he said.

Mr. Guterres added that the Global Principles aim to empower people to claim their rights, help protect children, ensure truthful and reliable information for young people, and enable Public interest-based media conveys reliable and accurate information.

Trust and resilience, for the common good

The Principles were developed through wide-ranging consultations with United Nations Member States, the private sector, youth leaders, the media, academia and civil society.

They focus on building trust and resilience, ensuring an independent and pluralistic media, creating healthy incentives based on factual information, promoting transparency and research as well as empowering the public.

Key recommendations include calling on governments, technology companies, advertisers and media to avoid using or amplifying misinformation and hate speech. At the same time, governments need to ensure timely access to information, support an independent media environment, and protect journalists and civil society.

Technology companies should prioritize safety and privacy, adopt consistent policies, and support information integrity, especially around elections — while stakeholders engage Artificial intelligence (AI) developers must ensure the safe, responsible and ethical implementation of human rights.

Prioritize safety and privacy

Furthermore, technology companies should explore business models that do not rely on programmatic advertising and that do not prioritize participation over human rights. Instead, they should prioritize user privacy and safety.

Advertisers should demand transparency in the digital advertising process from the technology sector to help ensure that they do not unintentionally fund misinformation or hateful messages.

Tech companies and AI developers should also provide meaningful transparency, allowing researchers to access data while respecting user privacy. Executives should also ensure independent audits and strengthen accountability.

Governments, technology companies, AI developers and advertisers should take special measures to protect and empower children, and the government should provide resources for parents, guardians and caregivers. households and educators.

These recommendations stem from the Secretary-General’s 2021 report, Our common agenda, which outlines a vision for future global cooperation and multilateral action. They serve as a resource for Member States in advance Future Summittakes place in September.

Secretary-General’s press conference on the launch of the Global Principles


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