Prof. Natali Helberger, a contributor to the DSA Observatory; Alexandra Borchardt and Cristian Vaccari published a blog post on the Media@LSE blog titled: How Council of Europe guidelines on managing the impact of digital technologies on freedom of expression complement the DSA.
The authors are the rapporteurs and chair of the Committee that prepared the recently adopted recommendations by the Council of Europe “on the impact of digital technologies on freedom of expression”. They summarise the recommendations and discuss how they complement the DSA. What does it mean for social media platforms, such as Twitter, to pay due regard to freedom of expression, media freedom and pluralism? The authors argue that these recommendations can supplement the DSA regarding the adherence of platforms to freedom of expression.
How Council of Europe guidelines on managing the impact of digital technologies on freedom of expression complement the DSA
September 14th, 2022
Where the DSA takes an application or tool-based approach, the recommendation adopts a broader media ecology perspective. (…) The recommendation takes a different approach and acknowledges that all those digital tools and applications together form the wider digital communication infrastructure that democracies rely on.
Fundamental rights, such as the right to freedom of expression, at least in Europe, apply in the first place to the relationship between states and citizens. Mandating that private actors such as internet intermediaries pay due regard to abstract rights such as the right to freedom of expression raises a host of difficult interpretational questions. (…) there is only limited expertise on how to interpret and implement fundamental rights law in the European Union, which started as, and still is primarily, an economic community. The Council of Europe’s recommendations and guidelines have an important complementary role to play in clarifying what respect for fundamental rights entails in the digital age and suggesting concrete actions to realise this vision.
Read the full blog post here.