By Diego Naranjo

EDRi submitted its response to the European Commission consultation on platforms, online intermediaries, data, cloud computing and the collaborative economy on the 24 December 2015. The consultation covered a very broad range of different online services such as AirBnB, eBay, Netflix, Facebook, YouTube and others, which were labeled under the dubious denomination of “platform”. It also tackled topics which are subject to different legal frameworks such as including privacy, copyright, open data and new methods of use of services.

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Despite our timely efforts, the our constructive input we provided to the Commission prior to the launch of this consultation on what should be done was not taken into account to an appreciable extent. As a result, contrary to what we suggested, different sectors of the society, such as consumers and rightsholders, were shown different questions; leading questions were posed and novel, incorrect interpretations of existing legislation were put forward as fact by the Commission.

Out of the many flaws of the consultation, perhaps the biggest one, is that it raised in many occasions more questions than answers. In a specific post on this issue we highlighted how the wording in a definition of “illegal content” actually covers content which explicitly legal. Finally, in order to provide the necessary background for the respondent to provide the answers the Commission wanted to receive, the Commission tells the respondent what they should “bear in mind”.

In order to address all the missing points in the consultation, EDRi prepared an answering guide and, with the technical help of Mozilla, a tool that allowed users to submit responses to the European Commission’s consultation. 103 surveys were submitted via our tool. At the time of writing the European Commission has not yet published their statistics regarding overall participation in the consultation.

EDRi’s response to the consultation on platforms, online intermediaries, data and cloud computing and the collaborative economy (24.12.2015)
https://edri.org/files/platforms.html

EU Consultation on future internet regulation – have your say! (08.12.2015)
https://edri.org/platformsconsultationtool

EU Commission platforms consultation: Just how biased is it? (14.12.2015)
https://edri.org/eu-commission-platforms-consultation-how-biased-is-it

Key points for a successful consultation on internet platforms (04.09.2015)
https://edri.org/key-points-for-a-successful-consultation-on-internet-platforms

(Contribution by Diego Naranjo, EDRi)

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