Digital markets bill to be introduced before the parliamentary session ends, says Kamall

On Thursday, 27th October, the House of Lords Communications and Digital Committee returned to the debate on the Government’s Online Safety Bill. The Under Secretary of State for the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, Lord Kamall, made some important points regarding the Government’s positions relating to digital markets. Much of his statement was directed at concerns that the Bill’s goal to remove harmful content from online platforms threatened freedom of expression and handed platforms discretionary power which could see them emerge “arbiters of truth” (see the Committee’s report, Free for all? Freedom of expression in the digital age here). 

Importantly, Lord Kamall also addressed the recommendations made by a number of Committee members, including Lady Stowell and Viscount, Lord Colville, regarding regulation. Kamall stated that the Government was “committed to establishing a pro-competition regime to boost competition in digital markets” and confirmed that they will set out plans for the new regime in a draft Bill during this legislative Session.

So, we should see new regulation proposed, if not this year, then early 2023 in line with the Government’s Plan for Digital regulation, first published in the summer of 2021.