A New Order: The Digital Services Act and Consumer Protection

Caroline Cauffman*, Catalina Goanta

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review


On 16 December 2020, the European Commission delivered on the plans proposed in the European Digital Strategy by publishing two proposals related to the governance of digital services in the European Union: the Digital Services Act (DSA) and the Digital Markets Act (DMA). The much-awaited regulatory reform is often mentioned in the context of content moderation and freedom of expression, market power and competition. It is, however, important to bear in mind the contractual nature of the relationship between users and platforms and the additional contracts concluded on the platform between the users, in particular traders and consumers. Moreover, the monetisation offered by digital platforms has led to new dynamics and economic interests. This paper explores the reform proposed by the European Commission by means of the DSA by touching upon four main themes that will be addressed from the perspective of consumer protection: (1) the internal coherence of European Union law; (2) intermediary liability; (3) the outsourcing of solutions to private parties; and (4) digital enforcement.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)758-774
Number of pages17
JournalEuropean Journal of Risk Regulation
Issue number4
Early online date15 Apr 2021
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2021


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