Best Practices for Navigating the Digital Services Act (DSA)

  • 3 April 2024
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In the dynamic landscape of digital regulation, it’s important to understand and adapt to legislative changes. The Digital Services Act (DSA) represents a significant development in this realm for businesses operating in the EU, with implications for online platforms across various industries. In this article, we'll delve into the key aspects of the DSA and provide some suggestions to help you navigate its complexities effectively.

Understanding the Digital Services Act

The Digital Services Act (DSA) is a comprehensive legislative framework introduced by the European Union to regulate digital services within its jurisdiction. Designed to address emerging challenges in the digital realm, the DSA aims to enhance accountability, safeguard user rights, ensure transparency, and promote fair competition in the digital services market. Its scope encompasses a wide range of online platforms, including social media networks, e-commerce websites, and online marketplaces.

If you have customers in the EU, the DSA might apply to you. We recommend seeking legal guidance to determine to what extent the DSA applies in your situation.

Key Implications of the DSA 

  • Increased Accountability:
    The DSA places a strong emphasis on the accountability of online platforms, requiring operators to proactively address and mitigate the presence of illegal content (such as hate speech, terrorist propaganda or child pornography). Businesses must implement robust content moderation practices to create a safer online environment for users.
  • Transparency and User Rights:
    Transparency is a central tenet of the DSA, with platforms mandated to provide clear information on content moderation processes, data handling practices, and user rights. By fostering transparency, businesses can build trust and credibility with their customers.
  • Cooperation with Authorities:
    The DSA encourages collaboration between online platforms and national authorities to combat challenges related to illegal content. Businesses should be prepared to engage with regulatory bodies and demonstrate a commitment to effective moderation and content removal processes.
  • Market Competition:
    To foster fair competition, the DSA seeks to prevent unfair practices in the digital services market. Platforms need to comply with the regulations to ensure a level playing field for all businesses, irrespective of their size.

Essential Gainsight Best Practices 

We believe that our essential best practices for user and content moderation, which we recommend to all of our customers, can play a significant role in fulfilling compliance with the DSA.  Whether the DSA applies to you or not, following these practices will create safety and transparency for your community members.

  • Community Terms of Use:
    Regularly review and update your Community Terms of Use. Clearly outline your moderation policies, procedures, data handling practices, and user rights to maximize transparency towards your members.
  • Moderation Practices:
    Strengthen your content moderation practices to ensure that you monitor all newly created content and swiftly identify and address anything illegal or inappropriate. Moderators can add moderation tags and team notes within the CC control environment to maintain a record of actions that have been taken within topics.
  • Reporting Content and Users:
    Your members can make use of CC's native functionality for reporting content. Notifications can be configured to be sent to individuals or to an email inbox or distribution list.  Next to that, you could offer a webform where members can anonymously report inappropriate content or users to you, or dispute moderation decisions.
  • Enable Automations:
    Within the CC platform you have the option to set up automations to block content from being posted based on keywords and to prevent certain keywords from being used as a username.  We also recommend enabling automated spam prevention, which is powered by Akismet’s machine learning and AI filtering.
  • GDPR and User Safety:
    Maintain compliance with GDPR guidelines for data protection and privacy.  The CC platform is designed to be fully GDPR compliant. Our documentation explains how you can optimize cookie permissions and comply with GDPR data erasure policies.  

By embracing transparency, enhancing accountability, and actively participating in compliance efforts, your community can not only meet DSA requirements but also foster a secure and engaging online space for customers and users alike.


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