Platforms in the Age of Metaverse: Sustainability by Proportionality

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Abstract of the research:

 

The metaverse represents the new frontier of the digital space and will likely bring new challenges as well as unprecedented opportunities like other digital environments. The time is ripe, therefore, to initiate a debate on the paradigm brought by the metaverse, with a view to ensure, on the one hand, the protection of fundamental rights and freedoms, as well as of democratic values, and, on the other hand, avoid the strangling of technological development and innovation. In other words, the primary challenge is to strike a balance between the rush towards innovation and the overprotection and enforcement of rights that could lead to disproportionate measures, thus making the building of the metaverse an economically unsustainable effort for platforms. Focusing on privacy and content moderation and adopting a European constitutional perspective, the present work highlights the importance of guaranteeing that the law and its enforcement primarily focus on the principle of proportionality that is then translated by the risk-based approach of EU digital policies. As the primary lodestar of European constitutionalism, proportionality will thus be essential to promote a sustainable evolution of the metaverse that looks at the various interests at stake, including economic freedoms, to correctly balance and respect them at their core.

 

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Católica Global School of Law, Lisbon.

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