News Media Europe

The European Parliament fails to deliver a strong Digital Services Act

Press releases , January 20, 2022


-Brussels, 20 January 2022-

Today, the European Parliament plenary adopted its position on the Digital Services Act (DSA). The text defines the mandate of the European Parliament for negotiations with the EU Council, starting end of this month.

The European news media sector regrets that the European Parliament have put more power with platform at the expense of media freedom. Lawmakers missed the opportunity of making the DSA a strong instrument in support of the sovereignty of the European media and cultural sector”.

Wout van Wijk, Executive Director at News Media Europe, commented: “News publishers regret that the European Parliament didn’t invest more efforts in the protection of lawful media content nor raised the bar in the fight against illegal content. We call on the co-legislators to achieve the right level of regulatory ambition in the coming months”.

Despite the inclusion of an obligation on online intermediaries to enforce media freedom and pluralism in their terms and conditions (Article 12), the European Parliament’s position fails to provide a complete framework for the protection of lawful media content and citizens’ access to information: without specific communication channels or trusted flaggers status, nor with the opportunity to challenge content moderation decisions before their implementation, press publishers remain at the mercy of platforms’ arbitrary decisions.

The text also includes additional user consent rules for the processing of personal data, further disintermediating the relationship between press publishers and their audiences, and conferring additional powers to the browsers operated by digital gatekeepers. The proposed rules replicate several existing provisions under the General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and in some cases go even further.

About News Media Europe:

News Media Europe (NME) represents the progressive news media industry in Europe – over 2,500 European news brands in print and online, radio and TV. NME is committed to maintaining and promoting the freedom of the press, to upholding and enhancing the freedom to publish, and to championing the news brands which are one of the most vital parts of Europe’s creative industries.

For further information please contact:

Aurore Raoux, EU policy manager (