European Union Reaches an Agreement on the Digital Services Act

On April 23, the European Union reached an agreement on the Digital Services Act (DSA), setting out content moderation and other obligations for online services in order to provide for a safer online environment. The European Commission originally proposed the Digital Services Act in 2020, followed by intense negotiations between the Commission, the Council of the European Union, and the European Parliament. While the final text of the agreement is still unclear, it is reported to include a ban on targeted advertising aimed at minors and based on sensitive information, in addition to limits on the use of so-called dark patterns. Other provisions include measures aimed at reducing the dissemination of illegal content, goods, and services, tackling online harms, and increasing algorithmic transparency. The obligations are proportionate to size, with very large platforms and services subject to stronger requirements. Services with more than 45 million monthly active users in the Union will be classified as “very large online platforms” or “very large online search engines.” Violators can face fines of up to six percent of their global turnover. The agreement must be finalized before being formally approved by the Parliament and the Council, with the obligations becoming applicable 15 months following the Act’s publication in the Official Journal of the European Union. Read more about the DSA here.


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