EU reaches agreement on Digital Services Act

[updated version of an article initially published on 2 May 2022]

On 27 October 2022, the Digital Services Act or DSA was published in the Official Journal of the EU (new Regulation (EU) 2022/2065 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 19 October 2022 on a Single Market For Digital Services and amending Directive 2000/31/EC). You can find the text of the Digital Services Act here

Together with the Digital Markets Act, the Digital Services Act forms one of the cornerstones aimed at developing a fair, safe, accountable and open European digital market. The DSA introduces new rules for online digital players, such as intermediary services (e.g. internet access providers), hosting services (e.g. cloud hosting services) and (very large) online platforms (e.g. social media platforms, app stores, online marketplaces), and for consumers.

The DMA lays down new rules, obligations and prohibitions regarding the implementation of mechanisms to remove illegal online content faster (e.g. the possibility to “flag” illegal content), increased protection of consumers’ rights (for example by implementing effective safeguards for users, by incorporating certain guarantees e.g. concerning freedom of the press and freedom of expression, or by introducing a transparency obligation regarding algorithms in the context of online advertising), due diligence obligations for large platforms, and clearer liability exemptions that online intermediaries and platforms may rely upon.

The DSA enters into force on 16 November 2022, 20 days after its publication in the Official Journal, and will become applicable on 17 February 2024. However, certain provisions will apply as from 16 November 2022, e.g. the provisions related to the transparency reporting obligations of online platforms, delegated acts, and the designation of very large online platforms and very large online search engines.