15 Dec, 2021

Digital Services Act: Renew Europe aims for better Internet

The Renew Europe Group in the European Parliament has this week moved forward with their push for a modern legal framework that ensures the safety of users online and guarantees the protection of fundamental rights, while maintaining a fair and open digital environment.

The Digital Services Act (DSA), approved on 14 December by the European Parliament Committee on the Internal Market and Consumer Protection, will bring more legal certainty for online providers with new, harmonised rules and stronger competition in the digital single market, by better protecting citizens and their rights with more choice and less exposure to illegal content.

For Renew Europe, it is important that new rules do not overburden start-ups and micro, small and medium companies, which are key for EU competitiveness worldwide. Renew Europe also aims for more transparent and informed choice for consumers, especially when it comes to targeted ads.

The internet should be safer for minors and more accessible to all citizens. That is why Renew Europe insisted on having a specific prohibition of the targeting and profiling children online and made sure that platforms respect specific accessibility criteria for people with disabilities in the DSA.

ALDE Party Vice-President Dita Charanzová MEP (ANO, CZ), Vice-President of the European Parliament and Renew Europe Rapporteur on Digital Services Act, said:

“I am proud the European Parliament was able to find a balanced outcome that maintains the principles of the E-Commerce Directive that has built the open and free internet of today. The DSA makes it better by creating a fair system to quickly remove illegal content that pollutes the online world. The European Parliament has done this, and in a way that respects users. Gone will be the days of people’s birthday party videos just disappearing without any reason. Gone are the days of internet trolls or business rivals falsely flagging content. Citizens will now have a right to counter-notice and to get their content back.”

"This regulation will lead to a better internet, where laws are respected. But Renew Europe does not want a sterilised internet, or a censored internet. Liberals must defend the rights and freedoms of our citizens, including freedom of speech. The European Parliament has only asked for platforms to take their responsibility for their own terms and conditions. They must apply them in a fair and non-arbitrary way for all."

Photo credit: Philippe Stirnweiss, European Parliament 2021

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