The Big Tech lobby has lost. Today the European Parliament voted on the Digital Services Act (DSA), the law that will make digital traffic safer. An overwhelming majority of the parliamentarians agreed with the law and with that also with the proposals of PvdA Member of Parliament Paul Tang: “I am very pleased with the huge support from left to right to prohibit advertisers to use personal data of our children and sensitive personal data, such as religion, sexual orientation or health. This is how we ensure that what is illegal offline, also becomes illegal online.”
Tang continued: “The European Commission’s proposal was a good first step, but the text adopted today by parliament – despite the massive lobbying by the Big Tech industry – is going to make our digital traffic much safer. “
The Digital Services Act (DSA) demands that illegal content be taken offline faster through better cooperation with investigative authorities and fact checkers. Platforms are also forced to be much more transparent. Users must be given information about the algorithms that determine their timeline and who has paid for the specific ads that users see.
Parliament is tightening these provisions by requiring platforms to take measures to better protect children and vulnerable groups on their sites. Tang: “Dangerous TikTokchallenges where children stomp on fireworks will be out of the question from now on.”
Now that the parliament has taken its position, negotiations will begin later this month with the Council of the European Union and the European Commission, led by the French presidency. The French have set the ambitious target of reaching an agreement before their national elections in April. If they succeed, the law could come into force by 2023.