The European Commission has recently presented proposals for two regulations aimed at harmonizing the rules of the digital environment in the European Union (EU). The first of these is called the Digital Services Act (DSA), which aims to regulate digital services of all kinds and primarily protects recipients of the service from illegal content, infringements of their consumer rights and other risks.
The second is called Digital Markets Act (DMA) and aims to regulate markets and the behaviour of platforms on them.
Both proposals not only follow the two-pillar structure of regulation, as previously planned, but in their form confirm the Commission’s efforts to reunite European legislation in the areas concerned. Once in force, the regulations will be directly applicable in all EU countries. So far, the proposals are open for feedback to the general public.
DSA. One of the main topics of the DSA is the fight against illegal content, goods and services and the related protection of users. In general, the DSA is intended as a complement to existing regulations on online brokerage services in the form of, in particular, the Electronic Commerce Directive.
DSA further regulates liability of DSA providers and retains the main pillar of the current legislation – the “notice and take down” system.
DSA contains a new definition of illegal content making it easier to identify and report. In order to facilitate the reporting of illegal content in practice, platforms will need to put in place easily accessible and user-friendly mechanisms for the electronic reporting of illegal content.
DSA provides new tools to combat illegal content in digital environment and aims to ensure more protection to the users as well as regulate liability of the DSA providers.
DMA. DMA aims to identify the most important players in the online brokerage market, who set the rules for the market environment, and thus take on the role that the DMA describes as a “gatekeeper”.
DMA thus sets rules for identifying a gatekeeper and also sets rules for the gatekeepers to follow. DMA divides orders and prohibitions for gatekeepers into two parts in Articles 5 and 6 of the DMA.
The first se of rules is in principle firm rules, while the second group presumes a dialogue between the Commission and a specific gatekeeper. Within it, certain obligations may be adapted to the specific situation.
DMA also implements penalties for violation of the rules by the gatekeepers and provide supervision authority to the Commissions as well regulates the supervision process.
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