Thursday, May 12, 2022

Proposed EU Digital Markets and Services Acts

James Vincent (Hacker News):

Early Saturday morning, after hours of negotiations, the bloc agreed on the broad terms of the Digital Services Act, or DSA, which will force tech companies to take greater responsibility for content that appears on their platforms. New obligations include removing illegal content and goods more quickly, explaining to users and researchers how their algorithms work, and taking stricter action on the spread of misinformation. Companies face fines of up to 6 percent of their annual turnover for noncompliance.


Large online platforms like Facebook will have to make the working of their recommender algorithms (used for sorting content on the News Feed or suggesting TV shows on Netflix) transparent to users. Users should also be offered a recommender system “not based on profiling.”


Hosting services and online platforms will have to explain clearly why they have removed illegal content as well as give users the ability to appeal such takedowns. The DSA itself does not define what content is illegal, though, and leaves this up to individual countries.

Thomas Claburn (Hacker News):

In short, when the DMA takes effect in 2024, it appears that Apple will be required to allow browser competition on iOS devices.

Hartley Charlton:

Apple will be forced to allow users to utilize third-party app stores and payment systems, as well as make iMessage interoperable with other messaging services, by the European Union’s Digital Markets Act (DMA), according to a newly published document from the European Commission.

Steve Troughton-Smith:

From the start, we knew the App Store was a symbiotic environment designed to create value-add for Apple devices by giving devs great tools to make apps to entice customers to Apple, whilst also ensuring to deny devs any ability to ever remotely threaten Apple’s position of power

It was an incredibly-delicate, calculated ‘truce’ that relied on Apple not overstepping into abuse. Apple, through greed, was unable to maintain status quo. Instead of reform, set in motion to burn it all down + spent 3 years illustrating to devs just how small & worthless we are

The idea that governments would ever step in and ‘save’ the platform from Apple’s nannying, abuse, was a pipe dream few of us back in ’08 thought would happen in a million years. Yet somehow, bit by bit, Apple pushed far enough across that line to bring us to where we are today


I’ve never understood why people have been so bewitched about the positive potential outcomes. Purely by making the operating system, defining the APIs, bundling its own software, manufacturing its own hardware, tying the operating system to its hardware and vice versa and selling even more of its own software, Apple has plenty of opportunity to set good examples and draw people to the combined value proposition. Why the hell does it need any more control than that?


iOS and the App Store has not been a truce. It has been a destructive, abusive, lopsided, mistrustful relationship; a relationship that has allowed access to a platform advantageous enough to make you close your eyes and think of multi-touch. It has been an insult to history, an exercise in attempting to redefine away the fundamental facts of the market and of their existing user base and developer ecosystem in a puff of malevolent marketing.

Foo Yun Chee (via Hacker News):

Apple faces a possible hefty fine and may have to open its mobile payment system to competitors after EU antitrust regulators charged the iPhone maker with restricting rivals’ access to its technology used for mobile wallets.


2 Comments RSS · Twitter

"as well as make iMessage interoperable with other messaging services"

That might sound like a punishment to American ears, but in Europe WhatsApp is the market leader. Getting interop with WhatsApp would be a great opportunity to drive up usage of iMessage.

I definitely can't wait until every single app I download has its own different embedded version of Chromium just to show one login screen or something. /s

I am also deeply skeptical about interoperability with iMessage. Won't that necessarily mean that e2e encryption cannot be guaranteed? (this is probably the real goal here) I hope there will be a way to disable interoperability for my devices.

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