LEGAL NEWS IN THE SPOTLIGHT | Media regulator issues new Guidelines on influencers and appoints a Specialist Panel

As a result of the public consultation initiated with Resolution No. 178/23/CONS of 13 July 2023, on 16 January 2024, the Italian Communications Authority (AGCOM) issued Resolution No. 7/24/CONS, containing guidelines to regulate the activity of influencers, i.e., those people – real or virtual – who publish content online through video sharing platforms and social media and have control over the creation, production or organisation of such content (the “Guidelines”). With the Guidelines, the AGCOM is extending the application of certain rules of Legislative Decree 208/2021, regulating the provision of audiovisual media services, to influencers whose engagement exceeds certain thresholds (e.g., influencers who have more than 1 million followers across all the platforms on which they operate) with the aim of outlining a legal framework to respond to the proliferation of influencers and social media. For this purpose, the AGCOM has also appointed a Specialist Panel tasked with drafting specific rules and criteria to subsequently adopt one or more codes of conduct for influencers, taking into consideration the services offered and the platforms used for content distribution. The Specialist Panel, which can be joined by interested parties within 30 days from the publication of the Resolution, will also be responsible for (a) identifying the characteristics necessary to further distinguish categories of influencers; (b) creating a list of influencers, to be subsequently published on the AGCOM website, whereby each subject responsible for the distribution of online contents can be easily identified through relevant contact details; and (c) promoting informative campaigns for users.

Newsletter n. 93 – February 2024