Facebook and Google came under increasing pressure in Europe on Monday, 8 April when countries proposed stricter rules to force them to block extreme material such as terrorist propaganda and child porn. Opponents said the measure also places a bigger burden on smaller internet companies than on giants like Facebook and Google, which already have automated content filters.
The bill would apply to companies providing services to EU citizens, whether or not those businesses are based in the EU's 28 member countries. It still needs further approval, including from the full European Parliament.
It faces heavy opposition from digital rights organisations, tech industry groups and some lawmakers, who said the 60-minute deadline is impractical and would lead companies to go too far and remove even lawful material.
"Instead, we call for a more pragmatic approach with removals happening 'as soon as possible,' to protect citizens' rights and competitiveness," said EDIMA, a European trade group for new media and internet companies.