Gafam : a not legitimate at the european level

Margrethe Vestager, the vice-president of the european Commission, and Thierry Breton, the european commissioner for the internal market, in Brussels, on Decemb

Gafam : a not legitimate at the european level

Margrethe Vestager, the vice-president of the european Commission, and Thierry Breton, the european commissioner for the internal market, in Brussels, on Decemb

TheEditor
TheEditor
01 January 2021 Friday 08:39
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Gafam : a not legitimate at the european level
Margrethe Vestager, the vice-president of the european Commission, and Thierry Breton, the european commissioner for the internal market, in Brussels, on December 15, 2020. OLIVIER MATTHYS / AFP

Editorial of the " World ". Europe does not have giant of the Web, but it has ideas for framing. Presenting, Tuesday, December 15, a plan of regulation of the european digital area, the Brussels Commission has taken a welcome initiative to try to rebalance the power relationship with these companies become omnipotentes and whose power has increased with the crisis of the pandemic.

The european Union (EU) is proposing to develop two new digital laws. The door to the services and the control of content, the other on the respect of competition rules specific to these markets. Their common point : there is no reason that the virtual space of the Internet is freed of the rules that apply to the real world.

The ambition of Brussels is not new, but the method changes. After being exhausted by putting in place codes of conduct more or less easily overridden or judicial proceedings to random outcomes, the EU now wants to regulate in real time, and not merely to punish it ex post.

also Read the chronicle of Philippe Escande : "An international consensus unpublished emerges to cut the wings of the GAFA"

The first text on the digital services wants to push the main digital platforms to assume more of their responsibilities on the content they broadcast, while cooperating constantly with the european regulators. Load them to moderate and filter more effectively the publications by devoting the necessary resources.

The law on the digital markets, it, is to require the platforms most important to report on the operation of their algorithms and the use they make of private data. The goal is to ensure that these companies do not abuse their position in some activities to extend their dominance to related markets. Accused of to prevent the emergence of competitors by buying them, these large companies will now have to notify Brussels their acquisition projects in Europe. The breach of these obligations will be sanctioned by fines of up to 10 % of the turnover of the offenders.

Change the method

Evidence that the Commission supported where it hurts, the Gafam (Google, Apple, Facebook, Amazon, Microsoft) do not have the words quite hard to qualify for the european initiative. To comply with these new constraints, the giants of the digital will have to adapt their business model with probably considerable consequences on their profits. This is great, because they refused until now that their promises of self-regulation have not been fulfilled. It was time for a change of method.

Article reserved to our subscribers also Read As the european Union seeks to domesticate the GAFA

The lobbying of the giants of the Web promises to be intense and aggressive to counter europe's determination. It can be based on a context that has never been as favourable. In the United States, the authorities also believed that the laissez-faire has gone on long enough, not to mention the public, who becomes aware that the free services has a hidden cost less and less acceptable.

there are voices within Gafam to say that this new regulation will stifle innovation. But it only has meaning when it is part of a framework that protects the citizen from hatred and harassment, that respects democracy and that guarantees to the consumer the respect of his private life and that competition is not distorted. By the power that they have gained, the Gafam are granted a lot of rights. It is legitimate that they are now responsible for the duties.

The World

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Updated: 01.01.2021 08:39
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