#dsa (38 results)

Meta’s elections dashboard: A very disappointing sign

On 3 June, Meta released an EU election monitoring dashboard, responding to investigations by the EU Commission under the Digital Services Act. It is riddled with basic errors, raising severe concerns about Meta’s engagement with risks of electoral interference.

Recommendations for the EU Elections 2024

Tech governance has become a key focus for the European Union. New laws have been introduced to reshape how technology and the internet are regulated. Success in EU tech governance hinges on effectively implementing and evolving these new laws to bridge gaps and adapt to technological advances.

AlgorithmWatch proposals on mitigating election risks for online platforms

Despite hopes that the Digital Services Act could protect against online risks during upcoming elections, this looks increasingly unlikely due to delays and issues in implementation. The EU Commission has sought input on how to mitigate election risks, and AlgorithmWatch has responded.

Press release

AlgorithmWatch and AI Forensics among the first organizations to request platform data under the DSA

Berlin, 15 February 2024. The EU’s Digital Services Act (DSA) is designed to give citizens new powers to protect their rights online. Today, many of its most impactful provisions are supposed to come into force: notably the creation of a Digital Services Coordinator (DSC) in every EU Member State and new opportunities for researchers to access platform data.

DSA Day and platform risks

Got Complaints? Want Data? Digital Service Coordinators will have your back – or will they?

The Digital Services Act (DSA) is the EU’s new regulation against risks from online platforms and search engines. It has been in effect since 2023, but 17 February 2024 marks “DSA Day,” on which many of the regulation’s most impactful provisions come into force.

Ensuring Legitimacy in Stakeholder Engagement: The ‘5 Es’ Framework

The DSA foresees that external stakeholders – such as independent experts, civil society groups, and industry representatives – engage in its rollout and enforcement. To help ensure these processes' legitimacy, we have developed the “5 E’s Framework” encompassing the guiding principles: Equity, Expertise, Effectiveness, Empowering, and Expanding Competencies.

The year we waited for action: 2023 in review

Exactly one year ago, I wrote that automated systems might be regulated for good in 2023. This was too optimistic. Not only did European institutions fail to pass the AI Act, even in its watered-down version; the rise of generative models brought us to a new level of danger.

Platform regulation

Not a solution: Meta’s new AI system to contain discriminatory ads

Meta has deployed a new AI system on Facebook and Instagram to fix its algorithmic bias problem for housing ads in the US. But it’s probably more band-aid than AI fairness solution. Gaps in Meta’s compliance report make it difficult to verify if the system is working as intended, which may preview what’s to come from Big Tech compliance reporting in the EU.

Op-Ed on questionable Meta study

Social media algorithms are harmless, or are they?

New research published in Science and Nature suggest that Facebook and Instagram are not causing political polarization. But there are limitations in the research design that need to be discussed.

A data scientist had found that their work (the algorithm depicted on their laptop screen) has ‘jumped’ out of the screen and threatens to cause problems with a variety of different industries. Here a hospital, bus and siren could represent healthcare, transport and emergency services. The data scientist looks shocked and worried about what trouble the AI may cause there.

Making sense of the Digital Services Act

How to define platforms’ systemic risks to democracy

It remains unclear how the largest platforms and search engines should go about identifying “systemic risks” to comply with the DSA. AlgorithmWatch outlines a methodology that will serve as a benchmark for how we, as a civil society watchdog, will judge the risk assessments that are currently being conducted.

Joint statement

A diverse auditing ecosystem is needed to uncover algorithmic risks

The Digital Services Act (DSA) will force the largest platforms and search engines to pay for independent audits to help check their compliance with the law. But who will audit the auditors? Read AlgorithmWatch and AI Forensics' joint feedback to the European Commission on strengthening the DSA’s independent auditing rules via a Delegated Act.

Open letter

DSA must empower public interest research with public data access

Access to “public data” is key for researchers and watchdogs working to uncover societal risks stemming from social media—but major platforms like Facebook and Twitter are cutting access to important data analytics tools to study them. The EU must now step in to ensure that researchers aren’t left in the dark.

Call for Evidence: new rules must empower researchers where platforms won’t

The ink may have dried on the Digital Services Act (DSA), but key data access provisions are still being written with input from researchers and civil society experts. Read AlgorithmWatch’s submission to the European Commission.

The EU now has the means to rein in large platforms. It should start with Twitter.

The European Commission today announced the platforms that will have to comply with the strictest rules the Digital Services Act imposes on companies. Twitter has to be on top of its list in enforcing these rules.

Risky business: How do we get a grip on social media algorithms?

Public scrutiny is essential to understand the risks that personalized recommender systems pose to society. The DSA’s new transparency regime is a promising step forward, but we still need external, adversarial audits to hold platforms accountable.

A joint statement on Digital Services Act implementation at the national level

As the political process of negotiating the landmark new set of EU rules for a safer and more accountable online environment has concluded, civil society organisations from across Europe joined forces to offer suggestions on how to strengthen the harmonization of the DSA implementation process across EU member states.

Platforms’ promises to researchers: first reports missing the baseline

An initial analysis shows that platforms have done little to “empower the research community” despite promises made last June under the EU’s revamped Code of Practice on Disinformation.

The year automated systems might have been regulated: 2022 in review

Automated systems were surprisingly absent from this year’s major stories. On the regulation front, European institutions stepped up their efforts. How much change Europeans can expect depends on the institutions’ resolve, and the first test of 2023 already began.

A guide to the EU’s new rules for researcher access to platform data

Thanks to the Digital Services Act (DSA), public interest researchers in the EU have a new legal framework to access and study internal data held by major tech platforms. What does this framework look like, and how can it be put into practice?

The fediverse is growing, but power imbalances might stay

Alternative social network Mastodon, which has no algorithmic timeline and a decentralized structure, is rapidly gaining steam. But the regulatory framework, which was built for billion-dollar companies, could dampen its growth.

A guide to the Digital Services Act, the EU’s new law to rein in Big Tech

Everything you need to know about the Digital Services Act (DSA), Europe’s new law to make powerful tech platforms like YouTube, TikTok, Facebook, and Twitter more transparent and accountable for the risks they pose to society.

Facebook’s gutting of CrowdTangle: a step backward for platform transparency

Facebook is quietly dismantling CrowdTangle, a tool that academics, watchdog organizations and journalists rely on to expose disinformation and other problematic content on the platform. The move contradicts the company’s commitments to give researchers better access to data.

The Digital Services Act: It’s time for Europe to turn the tables on Big Tech

The EU’s new Digital Services Act is a blueprint for forcing Facebook, Youtube, and other major online platforms to tackle the serious risks they pose to individuals and the public sphere. Its success now depends on whether EU officials will effectively enforce the law.

Policy Brief: Our recommendations for strengthening data access for public interest research

The Digital Services Act: EU sets a new standard for platform accountability

A political agreement on the Digital Services Act (DSA) reached late last week may set a major blueprint for protecting people’s rights online and holding Big Tech companies accountable. It will do so in part by forcing platforms to be more transparent about the design and function of the algorithmic systems which are core to their business practices.

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