EU Proposes Major New Rules for Big Tech

The Digital Markets Act is designed to reign in big companies like Amazon, Facebook and Apple. Alternatively, those companies could choose not to do business in Europe, fearing the requirements could be too expensive or too risky. My guess is that none of the platforms will have the guts to do that, but who knows.

Fines could be up to 10% of a company’s annual revenue or 20% for repeat offenders.

The EU thinks the law could be passed and in effect by the fall. Companies would have from three months to four years to interoperate with smaller platforms, depending on the complexity.

Right now the bill is only targeting messaging apps like Whatsapp and iMessage and the EU would like those to be able to talk to each other and other apps.

Some vendors, like Apple, choose to not allow their apps to interoperate because they think it sells more hardware.

It will be interesting to see who is smarter – the tech companies or the lawyers. I could see a situation where an iMessage user could talk to a Whatsapp user, but using the least common denominator – no security. While that technically works, that is probably not what either community wants. Will that meet the requirements of the bill? No one knows because the sausage is not done being made.

Apple commented about the bill saying that it will create unnecessary privacy and security holes and will stop us from being able to charge for our intellectual property. We believe in competition, they say (as long as they win, I say). Credit: The Verge

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