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- What is the European Digital Services Act (DSA)?
- What is Snapchat doing to meet their commitments under the DSA?
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What is the European Digital Services Act (DSA)?
The European Digital Services Act (DSA) is a new regulation in the European Union (EU) that regulates services such as social media, online marketplaces, search engines, very large online platforms (VLOPs), and very large online search engines (VLOSEs). The DSA aims to do the following:
- Improve content moderation transparency
- Improve content recommendation and personalisation transparency
- Minimise illegal content by making it easier to report illegal content
- Protect minors (ages 13-17) from targeted advertising practices
What is Snapchat doing to meet their commitments under the DSA?
The DSA is designed in a way that subjects larger platforms with more societal influence (VLOPs and VLOSEs) to stricter regulations. Snapchat is 1 of 19 platforms designated as a VLOP or VLOSE.
Our long-standing values are aligned with the principles of the European Digital Services Act (DSA) and we share their goals to create a safe online environment.
We are fully committed to meeting our DSA requirements by 25 August, and we are making a number of updates for our EU Snapchatters, including:
Giving Snapchatters the ability to control the content they’re shown.
Snapchat is primarily a visual messaging platform. There are two parts of Snapchat where we show public content that could reach a large audience - the Stories and Spotlight tabs. The content shown in these sections is personalised to the viewer, ensuring that people have an experience that is relevant for them. We are transparent about what content is eligible to be shown to our community - and we set a higher bar for content that is eligible to be recommended.
As part of our DSA commitments, all Snapchatters in the EU will now have the ability to better understand why content is being shown to them and have the ability to opt out of a personalised Stories and Spotlight content experience. We’ve also developed a simple guide to describe how personalisation works.
A new notification and appeals process for content or account removals
We have strict community guidelines that we expect everyone to follow when using Snapchat. Individuals can easily report content or accounts that they think violate these guidelines through our in-app or online reporting tools.
We will now be notifying people with information as to why their content or account has been removed and easily allow them to appeal the decision. Some of these features will initially only be available to Snapchatters in the EU before rolling out to our global community over the coming months.
As part of the DSA, we have also been building an integration to the European Commission’s Transparency API, which will provide certain information about enforcement decisions that have been made about EU-based accounts or content.
Updating our advertising
We have been making a number of updates to our advertising for Snapchatters in the EU and UK, including:
Restricting personalised advertising to Snapchatters aged 13 - 17 in the EU and UK: Most targeting and optimisation tools will no longer be available for advertisers to personalise ads for Snapchatters in the EU and UK under the age of 18. Now, personalisation of ads to these Snapchatters will be limited to basic essential information, like language settings and age.
Offering EU Snapchatters aged 18+ a new level of advertising transparency and control:
Tapping on the "why am I seeing this ad" will now give EU Snapchatters more details about why that ad was shown to them and these Snapchatters will now also be able to limit personalisation of ads shown to them. This adds to the existing advertising controls all Snapchatters have had, such as the ability to hide some types of ads in the ads menu and to edit the Snap lifestyle interest categories allocated to them.
Creating a library for EU targeted advertisements:
Anyone can search this digital library of advertisements shown in the EU and they can see details of paid advertising campaigns such as who paid for the ad, a visual of the creative, campaign length, impressions broken down by EU country, and information about the targeting applied.
Committed to compliance
To ensure we remain DSA compliant, we have appointed DSA compliance officers who will be responsible for overseeing our DSA requirements and monitor compliance across multiple parts of the business.
Fundamentally, we believe regulation is no substitute for businesses doing the right thing and taking responsibility for their products and platforms.
That’s why we’ve always taken a safety and privacy by design approach to how we build our platforms and features, and we are committed to being a platform where people can safely connect, express themselves visually, and have fun together.
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