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Discussion Draft of a Directive on Online Intermediary Platforms

Research Group on the Law of Digital Services, Discussion Draft of a Directive on Online Intermediary Platforms, 5 (2016) Journal of European Consumer and Market Law 164-169 (Publishers: C.H.Beck, Nomos and Wolters Kluwer)

7 Pages Posted: 13 Aug 2016  

Christoph Busch

University of Osnabrück - European Legal Studies Institute

Gerhard Dannemann

Humboldt University of Berlin - Faculty of Law

Hans Schulte-Nölke

European Legal Studies Institute Osnabrueck / Radboud University Nijmegen

Aneta Wiewiórowska-Domagalska

Universität Osnabrück - European Legal Studies Institute

Fryderyk Zoll

Universität Osnabrück

Date Written: August 11, 2016

Abstract

The rapid growth of online intermediary platforms such as Airbnb, Uber or Amazon Marketplace has not only brought new challenges for existing business models. It has also triggered a debate on whether there is a need to adjust EU consumer and market practices law in order to take into account the changing market structure caused by the rise of the ‘platform economy’. The aim of this Discussion Draft, which has been elaborated by network of legal scholars from several European Member States, is to make a contribution to this debate.

Whether the current changes in the digital single market justify any regulatory action is an open question. The researchers involved in the elaboration of the Discussion Draft have different opinions with regard to this question and how to strike the right balance between consumer protection, market freedom and innovation. However, they share the view that the debate, which has so far been conducted on a rather abstract level, may benefit from a ‘visualisation’ that provides a clearer picture how a concrete regulatory instrument – if necessary – might look like. In this sense, the text presented here is not meant as a plea for regulation, but rather as an instrument that could give a new ‘focal point’ to the debate on the platform economy.

Most of the researchers involved in the network hold the view that if regulation is considered to be necessary, the appropriate level of regulation should be European rather than national in order to avoid obstacles to the digital single market that could arise from diverging national regulatory requirements for online platforms. Therefore the draft has been conceived as a ‘Directive on Online Intermediary Platforms’.

Keywords: Digital Single Market, European contract law, European consumer law, competition law, two-sided markets, online intermediaries, online platforms, sharing economy, online reputation, online reviews, online ratings, standardization, service standards, new approach, Airbnb, Uber, Amazon Marketplace

JEL Classification: D18, D40, K00, K12, K20, K21, L10, L15, L40

Suggested Citation

Busch, Christoph and Dannemann, Gerhard and Schulte-Nölke, Hans and Wiewiórowska-Domagalska, Aneta and Zoll, Fryderyk, Discussion Draft of a Directive on Online Intermediary Platforms (August 11, 2016). Research Group on the Law of Digital Services, Discussion Draft of a Directive on Online Intermediary Platforms, 5 (2016) Journal of European Consumer and Market Law 164-169 (Publishers: C.H.Beck, Nomos and Wolters Kluwer). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=2821590

Christoph Busch (Contact Author)

University of Osnabrück - European Legal Studies Institute ( email )

Suesterstrasse 28
Osnabrueck, 49069
Germany

Gerhard Dannemann

Humboldt University of Berlin - Faculty of Law

Unter den Linden 6
Berlin, D-10099
Germany

Hans Schulte-Nölke

European Legal Studies Institute Osnabrueck / Radboud University Nijmegen ( email )

Suesterstrasse 28
Osnabrueck, 49074
Germany

HOME PAGE: http://www.schulte-noelke.de

Aneta Wiewiórowska-Domagalska

Universität Osnabrück - European Legal Studies Institute ( email )

Suesterstrasse 28
Osnabrueck, 49069
Germany

Fryderyk Zoll

Universität Osnabrück ( email )

Neuer Graben
Postfach 44 69
Osnabrück, 49074
Germany

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