The Digital Services Act (DSA) Observatory

The Digital Services Act (DSA) Observatory is a new project run by the Institute for Information Law (IViR) at the University of Amsterdam, which kicked-off in January 2021. The DSA Observatory acts as a hub of expertise with respect to the “Digital Services Act” package presented by the European Commission in December 2020.

The DSA Observatory provides independent scientific input during the DSA debate and to engage different stakeholders on the DSA proposals, in particular on the challenge of confronting platform power from a fundamental rights and democratic values perspective. To achieve these goals, the Observatory will bring together a broad network of platform regulation experts in academia and other relevant stakeholders, including civil society organisations, policymakers and regulators.

The DSA Observatory will closely follow the DSA process and generate regular outputs on relevant developments, including through dissemination activities, workshops and expert meetings.

NEWS

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ANALYSIS

Average monthly active recipients in the DSA: definition, grey areas, and how to calculate? 

The Digital Services Act designates VLOPs and VLOSEs based on their number of ‘average monthly active recipients’. How can and should online platforms calculate their number of ‘AMARs’? What role will embedded content and auto-completed search results play? And will the discounting of bots, scrapers and ‘double’ visitors lead to extra tracking of platforms’ recipients? This blog dives deep into the concept of average monthly active recipients.

Twitter Alludes to Implementing Article 40, DSA (Data Access & Scrutiny)

Twitter’s ‘Moderation Research Consortium’ now accepts applications by all interested researchers. DSA Observatory Researcher Pim ten Thije looks into the TMRC’s compliance with Article 40 of the Digital Services Act on data access and scrutiny. He recaps the DSA’s access obligations for researchers and governments and discusses what Twitter will need to change to be compliant.

The Digital Services Act and the Implications for News Media and Journalistic Content (Part 1)

This blog post looks into the implications of the DSA on the media, in specific: protection of journalistic and media content under the DSA. What (procedural) rights can be used by journalists to protect their content online? And what are the platforms’ obligations to protect media freedom and freedom of expression?

Empirical research in Content Moderation and Access to Justice: do the remedies fit the harms?

The results of this empirical survey suggest that the available remedies in the Netherlands offer insufficient access to justice for the online harm people experience.

EVENTS

The Digital Services Act Observatory at the Amsterdam Law School will be hosting events on a variety of topics which are relevant to the DSA discussion and process. Information on these events will be posted here.

Please get in touch if you would like to share your ideas for a DSA-related event or discuss your research at one of our events.

ABOUT

The DSA Observatory

The Digital Services Act (DSA) Observatory is a new project run by the Institute for Information Law (IViR) at the University of Amsterdam, which kicked-off in January 2021. The DSA Observatory acts as a hub of expertise with respect to the “Digital Services Act” package presented by the European Commission in December 2020.

Project team

The core project team for the DSA Observatory is composed of prof. Joris van Hoboken, Ilaria Buri, Paddy Leerssen, dr. Ronan Fahy, prof. Natali Helberger, prof. Martin Senftleben, dr. João Pedro Quintais and Doris Bujis.

Funding and collaboration with the Digital Legal Lab

The DSA Observatory is part of the “Digital Transformations of Decision-Making” research initiative of the Amsterdam Law School and contributes to the activities of the Digital Legal Lab, an interuniversity research centre on law and digital technologies run by a research network between four Dutch universities: Tilburg University, the University of Amsterdam, Radboud University Nijmegen and Maastricht University. This joint research initiative, the Digital Legal Studies Sector Plan for legal research is funded by the Dutch Ministry of Education, Culture and Science (OCW). The DSA Observatory was launched thanks to the funding of the Open Society Foundations.

CONTACT

The DSA Observatory team can be reached by email at:

j.v.j.vanhoboken@uva.nl or i.buri@uva.nl

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