Wednesday, July 24, 2024

Meta hit with EU charges as bloc tightens control over Big Tech | Semafor

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Europe’s law could shape US tech regulation

When Europe introduced the Digital Markets Act, it was a “major milestone” in establishing the European Union as a leader in tech regulation, an analyst at the Brookings Institute think tank wrote. The decisions the bloc takes under the DMA may also impact regulation in the US, the analyst added, and the law could inform discussions about tech policy globally going forward. “The starting point for every American legislative or regulatory inquiry into the practices of dominant digital platforms will begin by identifying the policies with which those companies must already comply in Europe,” the analyst argued.

EU’s new strategy aims to change Big Tech before sanctioning it

The European Union has been investigating the behavior of big tech companies since at least 2022, Wired reported, but in recent months, its strategy appears to have shifted. Rather than sanction them immediately, the bloc now seems to be going after how these companies operate, modifying them as needed, and then deciding whether to impose a fine. Ultimately, European regulators are giving the tech companies opportunities to cooperate and comply with their rules — but while platforms are making changes to comply, there have been some legal challenges to the rules.

The DMA could make Europeans’ digital lives a little messier

The enforcement of the Digital Markets Act will also mean Europeans could have to reckon with the trade-offs they made for more utility, a Columbia Law School professor told Wired, as “defaults set by US corporations will no longer be chosen for them.” The DMA is about power, not convenience. “Online empires that scaled in an era of minimal interventions from regulators, shaping the commercial web as we know it, are now facing a prescriptive set of rules,” TechCrunch noted. But the lives of European internet users may become messier before they get easier as a result of the DMA, according to Wired.

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