The ‘Facebook Papers’ they are just another argument for the European Commission to reaffirm its investigation. Last June, Margrethe Vestager, European Competition Commissioner, announced the initiation of an anti-competition case against Facebook. A great investigation that could end in a historic fine but that is expected long.
In a interview with the medium DW, Vestager has explained that regulating Facebook could “last for years” and therefore you have to “act now” to prevent it from causing further damage.
The European Commission against the “immense influence” of Facebook
The Competition Commissioner knows that the battle against Facebook will not be easy, as its regulation is extremely complex. However, when asked if Facebook is too big, Vestager answers “not for our democracy.”
In that direction, the Lutheran He explains that different countries must work together when it comes to companies that exert an “immense influence”, both on the democracies themselves and on people’s mental health.
With social media, what matters is not so much the quality or truthfulness of content but its “virality”. From there, it is easy to imagine how the barriers protecting our democracy could easily tumble. Great speaking at #humboldtrede! My full speech: https://t.co/OyjQHJGBcf
– Margrethe Vestager (@vestager) October 25, 2021
According explained Reuters at the end of September, the United States and the European Union are working to adopt a common approach to limiting big tech.
Regarding the regulation of Facebook, Vestager points out that the Commission is preparing legislation that will balance between freedom of expression and regulate what is “already illegal offline”, such as incitement to violence. It refers to the Digital Services Act (DSA), proposal accepted by the Commission and expected to be approved in the European Parliament in spring 2022.
The great battle against Facebook could drag on for years. “It would take us to court for years on end”acknowledges Vestager. However, he hopes to “take action now so that things change.” We will see what will happen in the coming months and what is the position of Facebook itself, a company that internally lives a process of reflection and it is on the verge of showing great changes.
Cover Image | Renew Europe 2019