Do you have any information on the dubious practices of GAFAM? The EU creates a toll-free number especially for this

Vincent Mannessier

February 02, 2023 at 3:00 p.m.


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The European Parliament does not seem likely to have decided to let go of the GAFAM jacket.

In the midst of the regulations that frame the actions of GAFAM in EU countries and the colossal fines imposed on those who do not comply with them, certain European elected representatives, accompanied by NGOs, have in fact created Lobby Leaksa toll-free number with a clear objective: to gather more information on the dubious, even clearly illegal, practices of these multinationals.

Lobbying particularly targeted

Paul Tang is a Dutch MEP behind this project. He explains that the main objective is to ensure more transparency regarding lobbying practices at European level. This project is based on two elements: better informing legislators and lifting the veil on influence practices that play with the rules, or even openly transgress them. For him, these practices not only encourage bad decisions, but above all represent a real risk for democracy.

Astroturfing is a practice which is thus particularly targeted. The latter consists, for a company or an interest group, in giving a position a semblance of popular support or scientific legitimacy that it does not have. This can be done, for example, by financing studies without explicitly mentioning who pays, or by creating associations or consultancies whose sole objective is to defend certain interests.

Whether Lobby Leaksis primarily intended to monitor the practices of large tech companies, its creation at the heart of the Qatar Gate scandal (several European elected officials suspected of having been corrupted to defend the interests of Qatar), is perhaps not no longer a coincidence.

How it works Lobby Leaks ?

Intended primarily for elected officials and employees of the European Parliament, Lobby Leaks is not really a green number, but rather a website. Everyone can submit actions and content that they consider suspicious, such as emails or targeted advertisements defending the points of view of GAFAM a little too much.

The two NGOs that manage the site then undertake to investigate the reports thus received, and, if necessary, to denounce publicly and to the European authorities, the tendencies which are repeated. What to impose new fines in hundreds of millions of euros?

Source : TechCrunch, The Guardian

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