The German registered association "Freiwillige Selbstkontrolle Multimedia-Diensteanbieter" (FSM) was founded in 1997 by e-commerce alliances and companies dedicated to the protection of youth and minors. As an organisation for the voluntary self-control of the Internet, the FSM is operating a hotline that deals with reports on illegal or harmful web content that any person or organisation may report. The hotline activities are regulated by the Complaint Rules of FSM. In addition to the hotline work, FSM provides information and advice on media youth protection, related technologies and responsible media usage, available to the public.
An international association of Internet hotline providers called INHOPE was co-founded by the FSM in 1999. Today, more than 20 Internet hotlines located in Europe and world-wide joined INHOPE. The mission of INHOPE is to facilitate and co-ordinate the work of Internet hotlines in responding to illegal use and content on the Internet.
In 2005, the German Commission for the Protection of Minors in the Media (Kommission für Jugendmedienschutz - KJM) acknowledged the FSM as an institution of Voluntary Self-Monitoring. The association offers members to join the "regulated self-regulation'', a model intended in the German "Inter-State Treaty for the Protection of Human Dignity and the Protection of Minors in Broadcasting and in Telemedia'' (JMStV). In addition, they can engage the FSM in conflicts with the KJM.