Quo Vadis EU Law on E-Platforms? A Comment on the Advocate General's Opinion in the Uber Spain Case.

e-Competitions - Concurrences| October 2017. N°84886

21 Pages Posted: 1 Nov 2017

Date Written: October 1, 2017

Abstract

Uber probably epitomises the last wave of e-platforms businesses in the recent years, following on the preceding wave led by digital players such as Google or Amazon. In Advocate General Szpunar’s own words in the Uber Spain case pending before the CJEU, it presents what has become “a highly politicised issue that has received a great deal of media attention”. This is the first case to directly address some crucial legal issues regarding e-platform businesses, and its outcome will have an impact on the entire digital ecosystem as it will undoubtedly set the path for future interpretations of EU law with respect to sharing economy platforms and potentially on any kind of digital platform. In his Opinion, the AG opts for a very restrictive approach and considers that some digital platforms should be excluded from the protection granted by EU Law to information society services, and that Member States should remain free to restrict them. We argue against this Opinion, and explain why it is inconsistent with the facts of the case as described by the national referring Judge, with the EU Directives on e-commerce, and with the case law of the CJEU.

Keywords: Uber, online platforms, sharing economy, EU law, information society services, competition, freedom to provide services, freedom of establishment

Suggested Citation

Allendesalazar, Rafael, Quo Vadis EU Law on E-Platforms? A Comment on the Advocate General's Opinion in the Uber Spain Case. (October 1, 2017). e-Competitions - Concurrences| October 2017. N°84886, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3061752

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