Response to the European Commission’s “Inception Impact Assessment for Clarifying Responsibilities for Digital Services”

Daniel Castro Eline Chivot June 30, 2020
June 30, 2020

The Center for Data Innovation submitted feedback to the European Commission’s roadmap titled “Digital Services Act package: Deepening the internal market and clarifying responsibilities for digital services.”

The European Commission plans to propose a Digital Services Act, new legislation that could revise or repeal the e-Commerce Directive and create a new set of regulations for Internet intermediaries. The goal of the legislation is to create clearer and more harmonized rules for digital services and address concerns about illegal and harmful online content, while protecting digital innovation and free expression.

The Commission seeks to feedback on three policy options for the Digital Services Act. This submission explains why, although all would take important and needed steps towards addressing illegal online content, none of these three options is ideal, and highlights six key goals the Commission should prioritize in the forthcoming Digital Services Act. In particular, the Digital Services Act should clarify the types of platforms and content that fall in scope; set proportionate responsibilities and obligations for platforms; increase legal certainty for platforms; protect freedom of expression; harmonize rules across the EU; and minimize the impact of its rules outside of its borders.