Note — Apr 21, 2019

A Vision for a Shared Digital Europe

This new vision for digital policymaking in Europe is packed with clear insights on what needs to change in Europe’s (and roughly everyone else’s) framing of digital. It’s also very well written with some useful phrasings, I could have quoted a lot more than the ones below. They propose four foundational principles; Enable Self-Determination, Cultivate the Commons, Decentralise Infrastructure and Empower Public Institutions.

Seeing the digital space only as a marketplace is short sighted and unrepresentative of its effect on our lives. The digital space is in effect our society – a society that is experiencing a digital transformation. Therefore we cannot accept to define the digital sphere as a place where only market dynamics rule. […]

Digital changes the society, and we need to shape and design technology based on positive social objectives. Digital technologies should facilitate a society that is equitable and democratic, where basic liberties and rights are protected, where strong public institutions function in the public interest, and where people have a say in how things work. We believe that Europe has the capacity to shape such a digital society. […]

Our reliance on platforms and services that have grown to dominance by appropriating the data produced by our daily lives has come to a point where its detrimental effects clearly outweigh the value provided by these services to citizens and Europe as a whole. […]

We need an understanding of the digital space that takes into account that it is a hybrid space, both a market as well as a public space where the commons can also thrive.