July 15. 2024. 8:01

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Jourová to push tech giants over disinformation

Czech Commissioner Věra Jourová plans to meet with large technology companies in a month to discuss with them, among other things, the implementation of their new obligations under the Digital Services Act (DSA).

The DSA should provide EU member states with data on the size of digital platforms and the number of regular users, data which has so far remained secret.

“We will have another big debate with platform representatives in April or May. We want them to improve the data they will provide us with during June,” Jourová said during a recent debate on the fight against disinformation in Central and Eastern Europe organised by the EUROPEUM think-tank in Brussels.

The DSA applies to all digital players but has a particularly strict regime for very large online platforms with more than 45 million EU users that are currently being determined.

“When discussing how to strengthen the fight against disinformation, I always urge platforms to deploy more resources, especially in Central and Eastern European countries, which are most affected by Russian propaganda,” Jourová said at the debate.

A study by the GLOBSEC think tank conducted in nine countries in the region showed that in the first weeks after the Russian invasion of Ukraine, many respondents did not perceive Russia as the aggressor.

Political leaders are also aware of the susceptibility to disinformation. Last week, Czech Prime Minister Petr Fiala joined an open letter from a group of his counterparts to the heads of technology giants.

In it, the prime ministers of the Czech Republic, Moldova, Slovakia, Estonia, Lithuania, Poland, Latvia and Ukraine call for a more effective fight against disinformation. They also stress that their countries are facing an information war, with Moldova on the front line.

The leaders of the eight European countries also called on the tech giants’ bosses to strengthen cooperation with governments, civil society and independent media.

(Kateřina Horáková | EURACTIV.cz)