Hate Speech, Fake News and Populism: the Dark Side of Social Networks

The Internet, SNs in particular, has altered the usual pattern of protection/limitation of freedom of speech, because has maximized the potential of this freedom. Recently, the freedom of speech has been put under strain, because of the spreading of fake news/hate speech, intertwined with the rise of populism throughout Europe.
The interplay between fake news/hate speech and populism undermines the democratic legal order. In this context, freedom of speech has to be balanced with the protection of democracy. However, any possible national legislation aiming at sanctioning fake news and hate speech on social networks’ platforms seems to require the cooperation and intervention of the social platforms, raising concerns, mainly related to the enforceability.
The German law, which provides for a notice and take down system within 24 hours, offers a tentative solution to the issue, though seeming not to properly focus on the transitional character of net, demanding a transnational approach