INDUSTRIES, MEDIA | EU Member States not to subject online platforms established in a different EU Member State to general and abstract obligations

Newsletter n. 91 – December 2023

INDUSTRIES

MEDIA

EU Member States not to subject online platforms established in a different EU Member State to general and abstract obligations

On 9 November 2023, the European Court of Justice (ECJ) issued its judgment in case C-376/22 (Google Ireland Limited, Meta Platforms Ireland Limited, Tik Tok Technology Limited v Kommunikationsbehörde Austria) establishing that the exception set by Article 3(4) of Directive (EC) 2000/31, recognizing inter alia the possibility to adopt proportional measures that restrict the freedom to provide information society services from another Member State in case of specifically identified reasons, applies only if the measures relate to a “given” information society service and not to a whole category of given information society services described in general and abstract terms.  A different interpretation would in fact have the effect of subjecting the providers to the legislation of both the home Member State and the Member State of destination, resulting incompatible with the principles of free movement of services and with the ‘country of origin principle’. For sake of completeness, the Austrian law having triggered the ruling concerned an obligation applicable to all providers of communication platforms to establish a procedure for the handling and processing of notifications on illegal content.