It must be possible to curb the power of large technology companies in a European context. That is what the Netherlands and France say. According to State Secretary Mona Keijzer of Economic Affairs and her French colleague Cédric O, a European regulator must be able to deal with the companies.
No companies are mentioned by name, but the two ministers say that the measures should apply to platforms “that consumers or entrepreneurs can hardly ignore and which therefore have a so-called gatekeeper position”. Then the American tech giants Amazon, Apple, Facebook and Google quickly come into the picture.
Prohibition favoring own services
A number of proposals are being made, such as a ban on the platforms favoring their own services “which would disadvantage other users”. The ministers also envision other measures, such as the obligation to share data, interoperability (allowing different services to communicate with each other) and allowing platforms to proactively offer alternatives.
The two state secretaries present their proposals in a discussion document that they call a ‘non-paper’. This means that the document has no legal value and is intended for discussion within the EU.
The European Commission is currently working on new guidelines, the Digital Services Act, which are expected to contain proposals to curtail the power of tech companies. The proposals are expected before the end of the year.
In the video below, NOS on 3 goes deeper into the question of whether the world’s largest tech companies are not becoming too powerful: