Paid Facebook and Instagram, Europe gets angry

After Apple, it's Meta's turn to have its rights slapped by Europe for trying to circumvent consumer data protection legislation.

The famous European Digital Markets Act (DMA) legislation includes several provisions to force tech giants not to do anything. Which apparently doesn't stop them from doing anything.

Meta circumvents European law…££££

After Apple, it is Meta's turn to be under investigation for non-compliance with the rules. In question, the offer launched last year by Meta on Instagram and Facebook: two choices for users, pay to no longer have ads or accept in good conscience to receive personalized ads in order to access the social network for free. An offer supposed to meet the requirements of the European Union wishing to restrict the capacity of social networks to recover the data of its users in order to serve them personalized advertisements. We clearly felt that it was more of a scam than true obedience to the law. And Europe felt it too.

The floor to Margrethe Vestager (European Commission)££££

The European Union declares that this paid model does not comply with Article 5(2) of the DMA because it does not offer a third free option and whose advertisements do not target the user. The sort of much less profitable option for Meta, of course. “We want to empower citizens to take control of their own data and choose a less personalized advertising experience,” said Margrethe Vestager, who heads Europe's competition policy.

Meta's Matthew Pollard speaks ££££

; "The ad-free subscription follows the direction of Europe's highest court and complies with the DMA, said Meta spokesperson Matthew Pollard, at The Verge website. We look forward to continuing a constructive dialogue with the European Commission to conclude this investigation.”

It now remains to be verified whether this decision by the European Commission will also be reflected in practice at the level of the many websites which leave no other choice than to subscribe to avoid accepting their cookies, and be thus tracked…