The European Union has threatened to ban Twitter unless Elon Musk complies with the bloc’s strict rules on content moderation and agrees to censor users.
EU bureaucrats issued the threat during a videoconference today with Musk, Twitter’s new owner and CEO.
Thierry Breton, the EU’s commissioner in charge of implementing the bloc’s digital rules, is demanding that the social media platform follows the EU’s strict rules on content moderation.
Breton made the threat during a video meeting with Musk, according to media reports.
Breton told the tech entrepreneur that Twitter must follow the EU’s list of rules, including dropping the “arbitrary” way Musk reinstates banned users.
Musk was told that Twitter must “aggressively” target so-called “disinformation” and agree to an “extensive independent audit” of the platform by next year.
BREAKING: EU has threatened to ban Elon Musk’s Twitter unless the billionaire follows the EU’s strict content moderation rules – FT
— Insider Paper (@TheInsiderPaper) November 30, 2022
Musk was warned that unless he followed these and other rules, Twitter would be violating the EU’s new Digital Services Act and would be banned.
This law tries to set the global standard for how Big Tech must moderate content on the Internet.
Breton warned Musk that if he violates the new law, Twitter could face a Europe-wide ban or fines of up to 6 percent of global turnover.
According to CNBC:
Under the European Union’s recently approved Digital Services Act, large tech companies will be required to have robust content moderation systems to ensure they can quickly take down illegal material such as hate speech, incitement to terrorism, and child sexual abuse.
For his part, Musk has said he wouldn’t allow illegal content on the platform.
The EU’s rules are expected to come into force by 2024.
Companies can be fined up to 6% of global annual revenues for violations.
Guy Verhofstadt, a member of the European Parliament, said Friday that “the need for rules and accountability is bigger than ever.”
“So one man @elonmusk now owns the biggest debate in the world …” he said in a tweet.
“Self-regulation in social media has never worked … even with lesser characters than his.”
EU warns Musk that Twitter faces ban over content moderation https://t.co/LQIZ5CYHgy
— Frank Graves (@VoiceOfFranky) November 30, 2022