26 Oct, 2020

Digital Services Act: Renew Europe sends a strong message to the Commission

In view of the Commission's forthcoming adoption of the Digital Services Act, the European Parliament adopted last week on 19 October three reports authored by the IMCO, JURI and LIBE committees and submitted for vote in the plenary. These reports aim at adapting European legislation to the new digital challenges and Renew Europe played a key role in their fruition. 

ALDE Party Vice-President Dita Charanzová MEP, Renew Europe’s spokesperson on the DSA in the IMCO committee, commented:

"Europeans love the internet. We love shopping and watching videos online, we love our smartphones, and we love that on the internet, there is a community for every one of us. But the reason why we have this internet we love is because we set down some very basic rules in Europe and then got out of the way. We let the internet grow organically. We let innovation and start-ups run free, and here we are 20 year later.

Now is the time to update those basic rules. But as we regulate, we need to make sure that the next 20 years are also ones of growth and freedom online. We ask for more transparency and more social responsibility, but not overregulation and new mandatory filters. We must have a free and open Digital Single Market."

Karen Melchior MEP, Renew Europe’s spokesperson on the DSA in the JURI committee, said:

"For 20 years, the internet has shaped our democratic dialogue. It has allowed us to talk across divides in our societies and across the globe. Online platforms have brought together people who were afraid to talk and allowed them to unite on Tahir Square, or on the #MeToo. However, the freedom given to tech companies has led to the creation of digital monopolies, polarised debate and allowed conspiracy theories to sway elections. If we want freedom for all, and not for just the strongest, platforms must be transparent and accountable to society and to their users.

Removal of content should not be by filters, but by a transparent process involving humans. Platforms should not be judge and jury; there must be independent dispute settlement mechanisms on content removal decisions. Voluntary measures on legal content should not be the Wild West but be guided through regulatory dialogue. Through European regulation, we can reopen the free internet to the benefit of all of society."

Moritz Körner MEP, Renew Europe’s spokesperson on the DSA in the LIBE committee, commented:

“With the approval of the LIBE report, the European Parliament clarifies two fundamental liberal principles: there must be no obligatory upload filters, neither de jure nor de facto, and what is illegal should only be determined by the courts. With this vote, the parliament elected in 2019 successfully emancipated itself from the deplorable Article 13 copyright vote of the EP in the last legislative period.”

Photo Source: EP/ Alexis HAULOT

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