Karlsruhe Higher Regional Court, Judgment of 24.05.2022
– 14 U 270/20 – DELETION OF INCITING POSTS: What shall you know about it

Deletion of unlawful content under the Network Enforcement Act

A social network can also delete a post that fulfils the criminal offence of incitement to hatred (section 130 of the Criminal Code) if there is no relevant, effective clause in the terms of use. Offense is offense. The right to delete unlawful content is derived from the Network Enforcement Act. This was decided by the Karlsruhe Higher Regional Court.

The case was based on the following facts:

In 2019, a user posted a post on Facebook on childhood memories and parental helps. Another user replied to this: “But then, the likelihood of being knifed or raped by a refugee on the road was not as great as it is today.” Facebook considered this comment to be incitement of the people and deleted it. The user filed a lawsuit against this. The Regional Court of Freiburg dismissed the action, against which the plaintiff appealed.
Facebook had the right to delete despite the invalidity of the corresponding clause in the terms of use.

The Karlsruhe Higher Regional Court stated that the defendant could not invoke the corresponding clause in its terms of use for the deletion of the post, as it was invalid pursuant to § 307 BGB. However, a deletion could also be justified without the applying of the GTC under the Network Enforcement Act if the content was unlawful, such as in an action of incitement.

Are you facing a similar case of inproper post deletion? Contact us. Not all social media deletions are lawful.

Are you concerned about violent or inciting posts on the internet and you don’t know what to do? Contact us. You can always ask for an examination of the social media content. 

 

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