POLICY POSITION published on 27 Sep 2021

EBU welcomes important amendment to the Digital Services Act

In a vote held on Monday, the European Parliament’s committee on culture and education (CULT) has officially endorsed its amendments to the Digital Services Act proposal. Importantly for the EBU, CULT has adopted amendments that would protect editorial media content and services that appear on online platforms from take downs and interferences by the platform operators. 

We acknowledge the work of Sabine Verheyen, Chair of the CULT committee and rapporteur on the DSA, to include a safeguard that would limit the control of platforms on media content. We now urge the European Parliament’s lead committee on DSA, the IMCO committee (Internal Market and Consumer Protection), to take these and other CULT amendments on board when it prepares its DSA report for a vote on 8 November. 

Inclusion of a prohibition in the DSA on platform interference with our content is crucial. As media, for our content and services we have strict EU and national media laws, regulatory oversight and professional editorial standards. Despite this, platforms regularly remove media content and apps, and they block our accounts without any warning. The DSA must ensure that media organizations remain solely responsible for the content and services they produce. Platform operators should neither be responsible nor liable for our content.

We also welcome the adoption of other amendments put forward by the CULT committee on the DSA as well as its amendments to the Digital Markets Act (DMA) which were also voted on Monday. These include:

DSA

  •  Ensuring that intermediary service providers properly attribute logos and branding to the content, goods and services of business users, including media. 
  • Clarifying the interplay between the DSA and sector-specific rules as well as the Member States’ prerogative to regulate cultural issues.
  • Enhancing the transparency of all online platforms’ content recommendations.
  • Extending the Know-Your-Business-Customer principle from online marketplaces to all online platforms.
  • Ensuring proper enforcement and oversight of the DSA rules by associating the national regulatory authorities for the media to the enforcement process.

DMA

  • Including digital voice assistants and web browsers in the scope of the proposal, therefore covering important services to access public service media content.
  • Strengthening the prohibition of self-preferencing by covering practices beyond ranking, such as the use of default settings.
  • Addressing gatekeepers’ practices of bundling services to the detriment of both end users and business users.
  • Opening up the black box of advertising and measurement by obliging gatekeeper platforms to provide strategic data to business users.
  • Clarifying the interplay between the DMA and sector-specific rules as well as enabling Member States to further regulate gatekeeper platforms where necessary. 

The CULT Committee’s opinions on the DSA and DMA, together with those other European Parliament committees, will be put forward to IMCO - the European Parliaments’ lead committee. Members of IMCO (the Internal Market and Consumer Protection committee) will decide on how the opinions will appear in the final European Parliament reports.

Read our full position papers on the DSA and the DMA.