Digital Services Act - Pre-legislative synthesis of national, regional and local positions on the European Commission's initiative

26-11-2020

This briefing forms part of an EPRS series offering syntheses of the pre-legislative state of play and consultation on key European Commission priorities during the current five-year term. It summarises the state of affairs in the relevant policy field, examines how existing policy is working on the ground, and, where possible, identifies best practice and ideas for the future on the part of governmental organisations at all levels of European system of multilevel governance. EPRS analysis of the positions of partner organisations at European, national, regional and local levels suggests that they would like the following main considerations to be reflected in discussion of the forthcoming Digital Services Act (DSA): Modernisation of EU legislation on platforms Regional and national stakeholders stress that it is high time to update and harmonise EU rules on online platforms, pointing out that the DSA should address the legal uncertainty and administrative burden stemming from the fragmentation of Union legislation. Broader scope for the DSA Local actors, especially cities, stress that the legislative proposal should tackle issues arising from the offering of online services that do not comply with local regulations, for instance on health, safety, housing taxation (e.g. short-term holiday rental) and urban mobility. Stronger enforcement and cooperation Several cities call on the Commission to clarify exemptions to the principle of origin and to include under EU law explicit provisions to supply the country of destination's competent authorities with all relevant information and data necessary to enforce applicable regulations. Regulation of gatekeepers Governmental organisations at regional and national levels share the view that there is a need to impose special rules on online gatekeepers. They therefore strongly support the introduction of ex-ante obligations on platforms in a gatekeeper position.

This briefing forms part of an EPRS series offering syntheses of the pre-legislative state of play and consultation on key European Commission priorities during the current five-year term. It summarises the state of affairs in the relevant policy field, examines how existing policy is working on the ground, and, where possible, identifies best practice and ideas for the future on the part of governmental organisations at all levels of European system of multilevel governance. EPRS analysis of the positions of partner organisations at European, national, regional and local levels suggests that they would like the following main considerations to be reflected in discussion of the forthcoming Digital Services Act (DSA): Modernisation of EU legislation on platforms Regional and national stakeholders stress that it is high time to update and harmonise EU rules on online platforms, pointing out that the DSA should address the legal uncertainty and administrative burden stemming from the fragmentation of Union legislation. Broader scope for the DSA Local actors, especially cities, stress that the legislative proposal should tackle issues arising from the offering of online services that do not comply with local regulations, for instance on health, safety, housing taxation (e.g. short-term holiday rental) and urban mobility. Stronger enforcement and cooperation Several cities call on the Commission to clarify exemptions to the principle of origin and to include under EU law explicit provisions to supply the country of destination's competent authorities with all relevant information and data necessary to enforce applicable regulations. Regulation of gatekeepers Governmental organisations at regional and national levels share the view that there is a need to impose special rules on online gatekeepers. They therefore strongly support the introduction of ex-ante obligations on platforms in a gatekeeper position.