Think-tank: Strengthen co-operation around tech giants’ influence in the Nordics
18th of April 2023
Platforms such as Facebook, YouTube, Instagram, TikTok and Twitter are an integral part of society’s democratic infrastructure and day-to-day life in the Nordic Region. The think-tank’s report states that, in spite of their potential, the platforms and their algorithmic functions can still seriously damage our democracies and the public debate.
“We’ve all realised that increased political control of the tech giants is a necessity for the wellbeing of democratic societies in the increasingly digital 21st century. The big question is no longer whether we need more democratic control of the tech giants, but rather how quickly we need it. In this respect, the Nordic countries should be pioneers and lead the way,” says the chair of the think-tank, Tobias Bornakke, PhD in digital methods and partner at Analyse & Tal.
The think-tank, which consists of experts from the Nordic countries, lists five visions and eleven recommendations to strengthen the democratic debate online.
Emphasis on children and young people
The recommendations include targeted efforts to promote digital literacy, increase safety for children and young people online, moderate content, and address disinformation created by artificial intelligence.
“The Nordics are some of the most digitalised countries in the world, but we don’t know enough about how the tech giants work. Our children and young people spend a lot of time online, and especially on social media, without us really knowing the long-term impact. And I’m concerned that it has more of an adverse effect on them than we perhaps think. The think-tank is recommending that we stand together as a region to tighten up international legislation in respect of the tech giants. The think-tank is also recommending stepping up our focus on children and young people online and increasing controls. I fully support that,” says Jakob Engel-Schmidt, Denmark’s Minister for Culture, who will be present when the think-tank presents its recommendations in Copenhagen.
Nordic co-operation around a global challenge
The report is a good example of what Nordic co-operation can achieve when we join forces around a common challenge. This is a highly topical issue for which there is substantial interest throughout Nordic society – among the population, the media industry and politicians alike.
“It’s essential that we protect our democracies in the Nordic Region. Nordic co-operation is important because we’re small countries with small language areas, but together we have a stronger voice both in the Nordic Region and globally,” says Karen Ellemann, Secretary General of the Nordic Council of Ministers. Ellemann continues:
“I’m very much looking forward to presenting the think-tank’s recommendations to our Nordic ministers for culture at their upcoming joint meeting in May. At that point, we really want to start discussions between the Nordic governments and become even smarter about how we in the Nordics can find the best possible solutions.”
Information for the media
Information for the media
The recommendations will be presented at 14:00 on 18 April in Copenhagen. Journalists and photographers must register their participation in advance. A valid press card is required.
Contact: Elisabet Skylare, email@example.com, +45 21717127.