Digital Services Act and Digital Markets Act: Unpacking the European Commission’s Proposals

December 2020

On 15 December 2020, the European Commission published its long-awaited rules for digital markets. The announcement represents a watershed moment for Ursula von der Leyen’s Commission, which has made so-called “ technological sovereignty”, or efforts to bolster the bloc’s role in digital markets, a central piece of its legislative agenda, to ensure better consumer protection and a fairer, safer and reliable digital market. The new rules consist of a Proposal for a Regulation on Digital Services Act and a Proposal for a Regulation on Digital Markets Act.

The proposal for a Digital Services Act (DSA) will replace and expand the e-Commerce Directive 2000/31/EC and aims to harmonise the conditions that determine the responsibilities and liability regime for online intermediary services, notably large online platforms.

The proposal for a Digital Markets Act (DMA) introduces a new competition regime for online platforms acting as “ gatekeepers”  in digital markets.

This client alert provides an overview of the two legislative proposals that are likely to dominate the EU policy discussions in the years to come. If you have any questions about the impact of the DSA and DMA for your organisation, please do not hesitate to contact us.