Positions

Read our responses and expert analyses on current political and regulatory developments concerning automated decision-making, big data and platform governance.

13 August 2021

#campaign #facebook #instagram

Under Facebook’s thumb: Platforms must stop suppressing public interest research

Facebook forced us to shut down our Instagram monitoring project. We have written an open letter to European Union lawmakers asking them to use the Digital Services Act (DSA) to defend public interest research about how platforms influence our public sphere. It has been signed by 36 organizations and 6.126 individuals.

Sara Kurfeß Unsplash

17 August 2021

Twitter’s algorithmic bias bug bounty could be the way forward, if regulators step in

Twitter opened its image cropping algorithm and gave prizes to people who could find biases in it. While interesting in itself, the program mostly reveals the impotence of regulators.

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Michael Dziedzic | Unsplash

4 August 2021

Draft AI Act: EU needs to live up to its own ambitions in terms of governance and enforcement

Going forward with the proposed AI Act, the European Parliament and the Member States should re-think its risk-based approach, focus on affected communities, and beef up transparency requirements and enforcement mechanisms. We very much welcome the EU’s efforts to develop a framework for the governance of AI-based systems based on European values and the protection of fundamental rights, but there’s a long way to go to achieve these objectives.

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7 June 2021

Open letter calling for a global ban on biometric recognition technologies that enable mass and discriminatory surveillance

AlgorithmWatch and AlgorithmWatch Switzerland are joining 177 civil society organizations, activists, technologists, and other experts around the world to call for an outright ban on uses of facial recognition and remote biometric recognition technologies that enable mass surveillance and discriminatory targeted surveillance.

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Erwin Voortman | Unsplash

27 May 2021

EU Commission asks foxes to stop eating chickens but does not build fence

The European Commission published a "Guidance on Strengthening the Code of Practice on Disinformation" aimed at large tech companies on Wednesday. The wish-list of measures forgoes any enforcement mechanism.

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Reclaim your face

4 May 2021

Reclaim Your Face – A European Citizens Initiative to ban biometric mass surveillance

A large coalition of civil society organizations, among them AlgorithmWatch and AlgorithmWatch Switzerland, have come together in a European movement that demands a ban on biometric recognition systems that enable mass surveillance. Join us and sign the European Citizens Initiative, calling on the EU to ban biometric mass surveillance - such as automated face recognition in public spaces!

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Farnoosh AbdollahiUnsplash

22 April 2021

AlgorithmWatch’s response to the European Commission’s proposed regulation on Artificial Intelligence – A major step with major gaps

Disclaimer: Our analysis below is a first take and a provisional analysis of selected issues that we find particularly relevant to our work. A profound and comprehensive assessment of the 100+-page document certainly requires more time and in-depth analysis. Yesterday, the European Commission unveiled its eagerly awaited proposal for the regulation of Artificial Intelligence (AI)…

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Krzysztof HepnerUnsplash

16 December 2020

The DSA proposal is a good start. Now policymakers must ensure that it has teeth.

AlgorithmWatch reacts to the release of the EU's Digital Services Act (DSA).

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Joint statement, 30 October 2020

Civil Society Coalition Led by AlgorithmWatch Calls for Binding Transparency Rules for Online Platforms

A coalition of 46 civil society organizations and world-renowned academics join AlgorithmWatch and the European Policy Centre in calling for binding transparency rules for online platforms. In a statement published today, the signatories urge the European Commission to put meaningful transparency at the heart of its forthcoming Digital Services Act. As the European Commission prepares…

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30 October 2020

Putting Meaningful Transparency at the Heart of the Digital Services Act

Why Data Access for Research Matters & How we can Make it Happen

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9 September 2020

Our response to the European Commission’s planned Digital Services Act

The consultation period for the European Commission's "Digital Services Act" ended on 8 September 2020. Read the submission by AlgorithmWatch that we submitted to the Commission.

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8 September 2020

AlgorithmWatch joins call for ‘Universal Advertising Transparency by Default’

We have joined the European Partnership for Democracy and many other partners in calling for the introduction of comprehensive advertisement libraries.

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Tom Parnell CC BY-SA 2.0

12 June 2020

Our response to the European Commission’s consultation on AI

Read our response to the European Commission's White Paper on Artificial Intelligence, submitted as part of the public consultation on AI.

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Joint statement, 2 April 2020

States use of digital surveillance technologies to fight pandemic must respect human rights

Together with more than 100 civil society groups AlgorithmWatch signed a joint statement setting out conditions that must be met before the use of surveillance technology to fight pandemic (PDF). The COVID-19 pandemic is a global public health emergency that requires a coordinated and large-scale response by governments worldwide. However, States’ efforts to contain the…

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2 April 2020

Automated decision-making systems and the fight against COVID-19 – our position

by AlgorithmWatch – also available in German, French (Framablog)* and Italian (KRINO)*. As the COVID-19 pandemic rages throughout the world, many are wondering whether and how to use automated decision-making systems (ADMS) to curb the outbreak. Different solutions are being proposed and implemented in different countries, ranging from authoritarian social control (China) to privacy-oriented, decentralized…

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9 March 2020

Germany’s new media treaty demands that platforms explain algorithms and stop discriminating. Can it deliver?

Facebook can’t decide if it’s a tech company, a media company, a telecoms company, or something else entirely. Ahead of talks with European regulators, CEO Mark Zuckerberg said it’s something in between. Now, German regulators might have decided for Facebook: The company will be subject to the country’s newly expanded media regulation regime. 

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24 October 2019

Germany’s data ethics commission releases 75 recommendations with EU-wide application in mind

A new document presented to the German government argues for more regulations in automated decision-making. AlgorithmWatch welcomes some proposals.

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Joint statement, 17 October 2019

UN: Protect Rights in Welfare Systems’ Tech Overhaul

Automating Benefits, Services Threatens Welfare Rights, Privacy

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11 June 2019

Submission to the Report of the United Nations Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights

The UN Special Rapporteur on extreme poverty and human rights, Philip Alston, is preparing a thematic report on digital technology in national social protection systems and its human rights impact, especially on those living in poverty.

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11 February 2019

Open Letter: Facebook, Do Your Part Against Disinformation

Along with more than 30 other organisations AlgorithmWatch has signed Mozilla's Open Letter to Facebook, telling them to make good on their promise to provide more transparency around political advertising ahead of the 2019 EU Parliamentary Elections.

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Analysis, 6 February 2019

‘Trustworthy AI’ is not an appropriate framework

AlgorithmWatch and members of the ELSI Task Force of the Swiss National Research Programme 75 on Big Data comment on the EU HLEG on AI’s Draft Ethics Guidelines

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19 November 2018

AccessNow maps regulatory proposals for Artificial Intelligence in Europe – our take

AlgorithmWatch welcomes the report by AccessNow on mapping regulatory proposals for Artificial Intelligence in Europe. It provides a good starting point for the ongoing work that will need to be undertaken to develop robust regulatory frameworks in this field.

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17 November 2018

Why Zuckerberg’s “Independent Governance and Oversight” board is not gonna fly (but some of his other ideas are at least worth discussing)

Mark Zuckerberg is all for regulation of social media all of sudden. What’s wrong with that picture?

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