Europe is not at the forefront of technological innovation, given that none of the great digital platforms of the current era, with the exception of Spotify and the now outdated Skype, were born there. The Old Continent obviously remains a lively part of the world, with the ability to innovate in many industrial sectors, particularly manufacturing and high-quality mechanics, and to bring together humanist and technical culture more effectively than others, but the path to progress in the 21st century has been laid by Silicon Valley and the challenge for the future is to avoid becoming victims to the new technological leadership of China.
Europe is defending itself with great expertise, and the absence of Big Tech companies gives it more freedom to face one of the decisive issues of the day, which is to try to regulate digital monopolies and protect the institutions and democratic processes of free societies. The much-reviled Brussels bureaucrats have shown themselves to be farsighted about protecting personal data from commercial, social and political abuse and manipulation and safeguarding intellectual rights. The privacy directive, which was approved two years ago and came into force in May 2019, followed by the copyright directive this year, are the first serious attempts by an important political institution to find a way to regulate the digital revolution.