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2023-08-26 04:24:40
Saturday 04:30:31
August 26 2023

Digital Services Act - Beyond Superplatforms: Reflections on Freedom of Expression and Human Rights in the Digital Era

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European Digital Revolution: New Rules for Online Giants. The Digital Transforms the World: New Obligations for Online Platforms.

Have you ever reflected on the power of the online platforms you use every day? Your experience on social media, your purchases on major e-commerce sites, and your searches on search engines influence how you see the world. But what happens when these platforms become so big that they're considered "too big to care"? This is where the Digital Services Act (DSA) comes into play, a new legislation by the European Union aimed at making the digital world a safer and more reliable place for everyone.

Giant Platforms under the Microscope

The DSA aims to ensure that online platforms are accountable for their actions and act in the public interest. This approach has been taken because 19 very large platforms like Amazon, Google, Facebook, and TikTok have become so influential that they affect public opinion, elections, and even people's mental health. These gigantic platforms now need to ensure:

1. Greater User Protection

Platforms will be required to protect users from harmful content and provide clear and concise explanations of their rules. They won't be able to hide behind complicated terms and conditions anymore. Additionally, users will have the power to choose whether they want to be profiled for advertising purposes.

2. Protection of Minors Online

Platforms must implement special measures to protect minors online, including parental controls and restrictions on targeted advertising to children.

3. Combating Illegal Content and Disinformation

Platforms will be legally obligated to combat the spread of illegal content and disinformation. This is a crucial step to preserve freedom of expression and ensure reliable information.

4. Increased Transparency and Accountability

Platforms must clearly explain to users how their algorithms work and how their data is used. They will be subject to rigorous independent audits to ensure rule compliance.

A Global Impact

The DSA is not just a European issue. Its implications extend far beyond the borders of the European Union. This new legislation could have a ripple effect, influencing platform regulations worldwide. It's clear that the power of online platforms has reached a level that demands a coordinated global response.

The Digital Future

The digital world is changing rapidly, and the Digital Services Act is just one of many necessary steps to address challenges and seize opportunities offered by technology. As we venture into this new digital territory, it's essential to balance innovation with responsibility and ensure that the power of platforms serves society as a whole.

Learn more about the Digital Services Act and get ready for the digital future! #DSA #DigitalRules #ResponsibleInnovation

Sources: European Commission | Wikipedia: Digital Services Act

Implementation Challenges and Shadows: Potential Abuses and Threats to Freedom

While the Digital Services Act appears as a promising initiative to make the digital world safer, it's essential to recognize potential challenges and shadows that might emerge during its implementation. This new regulation could be misused by governments or powerful entities to restrict freedom of expression and human rights.

1. Programmed Censorship and Mass Manipulation

One of the main concerns is that the DSA could be instrumentalized by governments to impose programmed censorship and control online narrative. This could lead to a restriction of freedom of expression and the suppression of dissenting voices. Moreover, platforms might be forced to manipulate information to fit certain narratives, thus influencing mass opinions.

2. Privacy Threats and Mass Surveillance

The requirement for platforms to share data and algorithms with authorities could create an environment where user privacy is compromised. The risk is that authorities might use this data to surveil individuals' online activities and limit their freedom of expression. Transparency could turn into mass surveillance, undermining users' fundamental rights.

3. Silencing Marginalized Voices

If not carefully managed, the DSA could also lead to the silencing of marginalized voices. Platforms might avoid controversial or risky content out of fear of sanctions, thus reducing the diversity of online opinions. This could have a negative impact on public discourse and hinder the representation of minority perspectives.

Balancing Security with Freedom

It's crucial that the Digital Services Act is implemented with rigorous oversight and careful approach. While the goal is to create a safer digital environment, we cannot allow this objective to be used as a pretext to limit freedom of expression and human rights. Regulatory bodies must be vigilant in ensuring that the regulation isn't exploited for political or control purposes. Balancing security and freedom must remain at the core of every step taken in the evolving digital world.

Let's prepare to face the challenges and defend fundamental rights as we venture into this new digital era. #DigitalRights #OnlineFreedom #DSAChallenge


  • Algorithms: Mathematical procedures or logical instructions used by online platforms to make automated decisions based on received data and inputs.
  • Programmed Censorship: The systematic control or restriction of online information, often by governments or platforms, to influence narrative and limit freedom of expression.
  • Illegal Content: Online material that violates laws, such as defamatory, violent, or hate-inciting content, which might be subject to removal or legal actions.
  • Disinformation: Intentional spread of false or misleading information to influence public opinion or promote a certain narrative.
  • Human Rights: Fundamental and universal rights recognized for every individual, such as freedom of expression, privacy, and human dignity.
  • Generative AI: Generative Artificial Intelligence, a type of AI that creates new content like texts, images, or videos based on models and input data.
  • Gatekeeper: Digital platform with a dominant role in the market that can influence access and visibility of other businesses and online content.
  • Mass Manipulation: Strategic use of information and narratives to influence opinions and behaviors of a large group of people.
  • Very Large Online Platform: With reference to the Digital Services Act, it refers to platforms with a large number of users (45 million in the EU) subject to special compliance obligations.
  • Privacy: An individual's right to control their personal information and be safe from surveillance or unauthorized access.
  • Mass Surveillance: Indiscriminate collection and monitoring of online activities of a large number of individuals, often by governments or intelligence agencies.
  • Transparency: Open and clear disclosure of practices, decision-making processes, and criteria used by online platforms to operate.
  • Human Rights Violations: Actions that breach the fundamental principles of human rights, such as freedom of expression, privacy, and non-discrimination.

Source by Redazione

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