Facebook offers to hand hate speech suspect data to French courts

Facebook offers to hand hate speech suspect data to French courts
© Getty Images

Facebook will provide French courts with data identifying suspected hate speech on its platform. 

France's minister of digital affairs Cedric O told Reuters Tuesday the deal was reached following a meeting he had last week with Nick Clegg, Facebook's head of global affairs. 

It is the first deal of it's kind the social media platform has made, according to Reuters. 

Facebook has refrained from handing over such data in the past and is not compelled to do so under U.S. or French legal conventions.


“This is huge news, it means that the judicial process will be able to run normally. It’s really very important, they’re only doing it for France," O told Reuters. 

"As a matter of course, we will no longer refer French law enforcement authorities to the Mutual Legal Assistance Treaty process to request basic information in criminal hate speech cases," a Facebook spokesperson said in an email to The Hill. "However, as we do with all court orders for information, even in the US, we will scrutinize every order we receive and push back if is overbroad, inconsistent with human rights, or legally defective.”

The deal comes after meetings between Facebook founder Mark ZuckerbergMark Elliot ZuckerbergFacebook announces tens of thousands of app suspensions after internal audit On The Money: Trump downplays urgency of China trade talks | Chinese negotiators cut US trip short in new setback | Trump sanctions Iran's national bank | Survey finds Pennsylvania, Wisconsin lost the most factory jobs in past year Hillicon Valley: Lawmakers say Zuckerberg to 'cooperate' on antitrust probes | Dems see victory after McConnell backs election security funds | Twitter takes down fake pro-Saudi accounts MORE and French President Emmanuel MacronEmmanuel Jean-Michel MacronPolice unleash tear gas as protesters take to the street in Paris Clarence Thomas, Joe Manchin, Rudy Giuliani among guests at second state visit under Trump Budowsky: Donald, Boris, Bibi — The right in retreat MORE, according to Reuters.

—Updated at 2:58 p.m.