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Sunday, November 28, 2021

Dáil committee calls for levy on streaming services to fund Irish productions

A Dáil committee has called for the introduction of a levy on Irish streaming services such as Netflix and Amazon Prime to allow funding for Irish content.

Screen Producers Ireland (SPI) welcomed the proposal, saying that it could raise a minimum of €23 million in additional funding for the creation of original Irish content.

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The report, which was published by the Oireachtas Committee on Media, recommended the creation of an Online Safety Commissioner post that would regulate harmful content on social media platforms.

This would place Ireland among the first countries in the world to provide systemic regulation of online platforms, according to Committee chair Niamh Smyth (Fianna Fáil).

SPI chief Susan Kirby stated that she was grateful to the committee for taking their concerns into consideration while adding that she is looking forward to further engagement over the coming months as the legislation is debated in the Oireachtas.

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The committee has recommended that the measure shouldn’t be introduced until its viability can be researched and reviewed by the Media Commission.

These recommendations were made in the Pre-Legislative Scrutiny of the General Scheme of the Online Safety and Media Regulation Bill 2020, which will also require social media platforms to provide a quarterly report to the Media Commission on their complaints handling.

A minimum age requirement to create accounts would also be introduced by the Bill as well as a ban on advertising to children online. The main forms of advertising being highlighted are online gambling, alcohol and junk food.

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