European Commission launches two consultations on geo-blocking and online platforms

The European Commission has launched today two consultations on geo-blocking and online platforms, in the form of questionnaires that can be answered here (for geo-blocking) and here (for online platforms and related matters). According to the Commission’s press release, the scope of these consultations is the following:

  • The consultation on geo-blocking and other forms of geographically-based restrictions will gather opinions on unjustified commercial barriers which prevent from buying and selling products and services within the EU. It covers, for example, customers who are charged different prices or offered a different range of goods depending on where they live, but it does not cover copyright-protected content and content licensing practices.
  • The second consultation will look at the economic role of online platforms, which include, for example, search engines, social media, video sharing website, app stores, etc. It will also explore the liability of intermediaries as regards illegal content hosted online and how to improve the free flow of data in the EU and to build a European Cloud. It will look as well into the possibilities and potential issues raised by the rise of the collaborative economy.

The European Commission will use the feedback received to prepare future initiatives in the context of its Digital Single Market Strategy (launched in May 2015, as reported by IFRRO) and the Internal Market Strategy for Goods and Services that is expected to be published in autumn 2015.

The press release can be found here: http://europa.eu/rapid/press-release_IP-15-5704_en.htm