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EU Commission: European Code against disinformation. Jourova, “threats to democracy are fast evolving”

“Threats posed by disinformation online are fast evolving and we need to step up our collective action to empower citizens and protect the democratic information space”. European Commission Vice-President for Transparency, Vera Jourova, said this at the press conference for the presentation of the new guidance on the EU Code against disinformation, which is part of the Digital Service Act, introduced in December and now awaiting approval from the other EU institutions. “A new stronger Code is necessary as we need online platforms and other players to address the systemic risks of their services and algorithmic amplification”. Large platforms having already signed the Code, for now on a voluntary basis, include TikTok, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Mozilla and Twitter, which regularly provide data on the actions they take against disinformation. With today’s communication, the European Commission also calls on smaller businesses and advertising companies to join the initiative. In particular, the Commission calls for more commitment by online platforms to ensure a more “robust monitoring” of fake news and more accessible data on the measures taken. Brussels also calls on the signatories to “reduce financial incentives to disinformation, empower users to take an active role in preventing its spread, better cooperate with fact-checkers across EU Member States, and provide a framework for access to data for researchers”. The European Commission is committed to monitoring content that can be a threat to both citizens and democracy. “We are monitoring both the sources and the funding” of disinformation, “we see an impact not only on people but also on the elections”, said Jourova.

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