The Lawfare Project filed a complaint against Microsoft Corporation in Spain on behalf of two Jewish professionals for offering results on the Bing search engine that link to a website with extreme anti-Semitic content, in violation of Spanish and EU law.
Microsoft is well informed and aware that the content being spread on Bing is illegal. It has been provided a detailed notice of the URL at issue, transcripts of legally relevant content, and grounds for the post’s illegality under Spanish law. Despite all of this, Microsoft has failed to block access to the search results.
The complaint filed against Microsoft could set precedent for holding a search engine liable for third-party content, not only in Spain, but in other EU and EEA countries with EU-harmonized legislation on the liability of internet service providers, intermediaries, and platforms. The Lawfare Project already achieved a major victory related to a similar case involving Google LLC last year that resulted in an understanding to change Google’s policy on removals of defamatory anti-Semitic content in Spanish-language search results.
It’s incredibly irresponsible for Microsoft and Bing to allow this virulently anti-Jewish content to continue circulating on the internet in violation of the domestic law in Spain, and the EU directives on the matter.
Ignacio-Wenley Palacios Iglesias, Spanish counsel for The Lawfare Project, added:
“The permanent, ubiquitous, and everyday influence internet service providers have on society as a whole cannot be understated. The impact of these providers requires a level of structure and responsibility to address the most extreme, illegal content created by third parties that now enjoy immediate global access via the internet.”
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Executive Director, The Lawfare Project