Brussels intends to increase the legal responsibility of the Internet giants

Google, Amazon, Facebook, Microsoft

The European Commission wants to amend a directive since 2000 and establish judicial responsibility for online platforms. Brussels especially wants to tighten the frame of the internet giants.

Since 2000 and since European directives on e-commerce, hosting platforms have benefited from adaptive legal regimes. Therefore, when users publish illegal content from the servers of companies that benefit from this status, they are only liable if they do not take immediate action after receiving the report. This text was handed over in France in 2004 for trust in the Digital Economy (LCEN).
However, this framework can be developed in the next few years, and the new European Commission can moderate, adjust and even question the so-called “retrospective” modestly. This seems to imply Thierry Breton, who took over the role of Internal Market Specialist on December 1, 2019, in an interview with Les Echos on January 7. However, he did not say exactly what he intended to do.
The commission’s new heavyweights have a large portfolio, but declared “there is clearly a need to hold the platform to its responsibilities” as it observes that “only five platforms are acceptable”. Or six major participants stored 80% of the Earth ’s data, but did not consider themselves responsible for the use of that data. ”Thierry Breton has no name, but obviously the big US groups are the target .
Thierry Breton argues that in an age of false information, hate news, and illegal content, we must “swiftly strengthen the responsibilities of large platforms.” He added: “The e-commerce directive has been in use for a long time, but the environment and use have changed a lot since its adoption.” Therefore, although no final decision has been made, legal updates are still expected: “I It would be better to do this within the framework of an e-commerce directive, but we will see if we need to go further. ”

Future Digital Services Act

Thierry Breton’s speech is not ubiquitous. When European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen proposed her political policy for 2019-2024, documents made available to the public evoked “new digital services legislation”, “which will strengthen Our responsibility and security in platforms, services and digital products. ”
This work will be carried out in particular by a colleague of Thierry Breton of the Danish Margrethe Vestager, who is in charge of competition matters within the committee. One of his responsibilities is to “direct legal work to improve the responsibility and security rules for digital platforms, services and products within the new digital services legal framework”.
However, these legal developments should be strongly opposed by the giants of the Internet. As reported by the World News, Edima lobbying groups defending the interests of Google, Amazon, Facebook, Twitter, Microsoft, eBay, Airbnb, Apple, Snapchat and Expedia are stepping up discussions: As a result, they are officially willing to host the reform The limited liability is the totem they do not want to be touched.

Snapchat Introduces Its First Parental Controls

SAN FRANCISCO — Snapchat, the ephemeral messaging app, introduced its first parental controls on Tuesday, as social media platforms face increasing scrutiny for exposing young users to potentially harmful content.

Snap, Snapchat’s parent company, said in a blog post that its new tools would let parents see whom their teenagers were friends with on the app and whom they had communicated with in the previous seven days. Parents will also be able to report accounts that their children are friends with if they violate Snapchat’s policies. Parents will not be able to see their children’s conversations on the app.

To gain access to the controls, people have to create Snapchat accounts and be friends with their children, who have to agree to the controls. The company said it would introduce additional features later, including one that lets parents see whom their children recently became friends with. Teenagers will also be able to notify their parents if they report accounts or content.

“Our goal was to create a set of tools designed to reflect the dynamics of real-world relationships and foster collaboration and trust between parents and teens,” Snap said in the blog post.

Snap, Instagram, TikTok and other social media companies have faced questions from lawmakers, regulators and activists over toxic content on their platforms that has led some young people to say the apps have worsened eating disorders and contributed to other mental health problems. Snap has also been criticized for how its app enables teenagers to buy drugs like fentanyl.

These issues gained traction last year after a former Facebook employee released internal documents showing that some teenagers appeared to feel worse about themselves after using its products, such as Instagram. Executives from Instagram, Snap, TikTok and YouTube later testified in Congress over whether social media harms young people. In March, a group of state attorneys general asked Snap and TikTok to increase parental controls on their apps.

Other countries have also acted to protect young people from the effects of social media. In September, Britain instituted new child-safety regulations, which spurred platforms such as Instagram to introduce its first parental controls. Instagram’s parental controls let people see and limit how much time their children spend on the app.

Snap has also recently struggled with a declining business. Last month, the company reported its slowest-ever quarterly growth amid a softening economy and challenges to its advertising business.

Snapchat’s parental controls will add to existing restrictions on how teenagers can use Snapchat. Teenagers currently have to be mutual friends to message each other on the app, and their profiles and friend lists are private. The app requires users to be older than 13, and teenagers cannot change their birth year in the app until they are 18.

The parental controls are available in the United States, Britain, Canada, Australia and New Zealand. They will be available in other countries starting this fall.