The Strengthened Code of Practice on Disinformation
22 June 2022
Pingen Kopie Dr. Anna Pingen

Following the Commission’s Guidance, major online platforms, emerging and specialised platforms, players in the advertising industry, fact-checkers, research and civil society organisations committed themselves to a strengthened Code of Practice on Disinformation. On 16 June 2022, the strengthened Code of Practice on Disinformation has been signed and presented by 34 signatories who have joined the revision process of the 2018 Code.

The strengthened Code of Practice contains 44 commitments and 128 specific measures, covering the areas pointed out by the Commission’s Guidance, e.g.:

  • Caring for demonetisation and cutting financial incentives for purveyors of disinformation;
  • Ensuring transparency of political advertising;
  • Ensuring the integrity of services, for instance by reducing fake accounts, bot-driven amplification, impersonation, malicious deep fakes;
  • Empowering users with enhanced tools to recognise, understand and flag disinformation;
  • Empowering researchers;
  • Empowering the fact-checking community;
  • Putting in place a Transparency Centre and Task-force;
  • Establishing a strengthened monitoring framework.

Signatories will have six months to implement the commitments and measures to which they have signed up.

Background: On 26 May 2021, the Commission published a Communication entitled "Guidance on Strengthening the Code of Practice on Disinformation" (→ eucrim 2/2021, 78-79). The aim of the Guidance is to make the 2018 Code of Practice on Disinformation a more effective tool for countering disinformation. As a result, the Commission intends to address the shortcomings of the Code of Practice revealed by the Commission’s Assessment of the Code of Practice in 2020 and to take into account the Commission's proposal for the Digital Services Act (DSA). The revised Code will also include the new insights that have been gathered under the "fighting COVID-19 disinformation monitoring programme". The Commission's Guidance reinforces the Code by several measures.