The Information Society Code applies to entertainment and social networking services online
The aim of the Information Society Code is to promote electronic commerce in the European Economic Area:
- by ensuring the freedom to provide information society services;
- by clarifying the rights and obligations of the parties.
Finnish authorities supervise that service providers that are established in Finland and provide information society services comply with Finnish law in matters that can be regulated with national legislation.
The Act implements the Electronic Commerce Directive of the European Parliament and of the Council, concerning information society services, in particular electronic commerce, in the internal market.
Information society services mean services that are provided:
- at a distance (provision of commodities to be ordered on the internet and delivered to the recipient so that the parties do not physically meet each other);
- at the recipient's request;
- against a payment.
Information requirements concerning service providers providing information society services are obliged to provide certain information. A service provider is required to:
- have certain information on the company and its operations available to consumers;
- provide consumers with information and advice on ordering services before they place their orders electronically;
- provide consumers with technical means with which they can identify and correct errors of entry before placing an order;
- immediately give a consumer an electronic notification of receiving the order, unless the ordered goods or services are delivered electronically without delay;
- supply consumers with contract terms so that they may store and reproduce them.
A service provider's obligation to provide information is eased in contracts that are concluded only by using e-mail or some other form of personal communication.
FICORA supervises that providers of information society services meet the information requirements laid down in the Information Society Code.
Electronic consumer sales must also comply with the provisions of the Consumer Protection Act. Compliance with the Act is monitored by the Finnish Consumer Ombudsman. The Consumer Ombudsman has issued e-commerce guidelines.
Service providers providing electronic data transmission and hosting services are liable for the illegal contents of messages they have transmitted or stored.
However, a service provider is not liable when its operations have only involved technical measures and it has not participated in producing the illegal contents.
If a service provider becomes aware of illegal contents, it must follow the procedures laid down in the Information Society Code.