When the Internet was launched, Europe’s E-Commerce Directive of 2000 created the basic legal framework for online service, setting clear limits on liability for digital platforms. The platforms weren’t responsible for any illegal material posted. They were only responsible for bringing down illegal material when informed. This limited liability allowed the Internet to boom.
But today, It is becoming ever clearer, however, that this era of digital exceptionalism cannot last forever. Governments and courts are chipping away at the sovereignty of internet firms, and public opinion is pushing them to police themselves better. Copyright rightsholders accuse the net of promoting piracy. Police think it feeds hate speech. Little by little, officials are looking at overhauling or at least chipping away at this key piece of legislation.
Our event will look at the present state of play round the E-Commerce Directive and discuss potential paths of reform. Panelists from all sides of the debate will participate: Internet companies, content holders, civil society representatives and regulators.
As part of CEPS Digital Forum we are holding a public seminar on 21 March from 10:30 to 12:30 to contribute to the exchange of knowledge. Participation in this event is exceptionally free of charge. Registration from 10.00. A light lunch will be served after the event from 12.30 onwards.