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Current Affairs

EU ground rules for Web

Date: 28 April 2022 Tags: Bills & Laws

Issue

A political agreement on the Digital Services Act (DSA) has been reached by the European Parliament and European Union (EU) Member States.

 

Background

The legislation will force big Internet companies to act against disinformation and illegal and harmful content.

 

Details

  • The DSA is a set of common rules on intermediaries’ obligations and accountability ensuring higher protection to all EU users, irrespective of their country.

  • The EU Parliament is expected to adopt the DSA in the next few months. The law will work in sync with EU’s Digital Markets Act (DMA).

 

Objective

The rules have been framed to ensure that the negative social impact arising from many of the practices followed by the Internet giants is minimized or removed.

 

Function

  • The DSA will regulate the way intermediaries function when it comes to moderating user content. This applies to large platforms such as Google, Facebook, and YouTube.

  • It will lay down specific rules and obligations for these companies to follow instead of letting platforms decide how to deal with abusive or illegal content.

 

Eligibility

Services with more than 45 million monthly active users in the EU will fall into this category. Those below the number will get certain exemptions.

 

Categories it will apply

  • Provide Internet access

  • Domain name registrars

  • Cloud computing

  • Web-hosting services

 

Penalty

In case of breach of rules, penalties could be as high as 6% of the company’s global annual turnover.

 

Implications

The rules do not make social media liable for the content hosted on their platform. They will be punished if they do not remove objectionable content.