SILENCING SPEECH: EU formally launches investigation against X (formerly Twitter) over alleged violations of Digital Services Act
By Laura Harris // Dec 21, 2023

The European Union (EU) has formally launched an investigation into social media platform X, formerly Twitter, over alleged violations of the Digital Services Act (DSA).

The DSA, which came into effect in August, imposes penalties of up to six percent of annual revenue or permanently bans the operations of very large online platforms across the EU for hosting content deemed "disinformation."

According to the confirmation of EU Commissioner Thierry Breton on X, the decision to proceed with the investigation follows recent inquiries into the compliance of X with the new regulations to combat hate speech, racism and fake news on EU platforms. The investigation will delve into the alleged breaches of DSA related to illegal content, disinformation and its advertising practices. (Related: Censorship remains a problem even after Musk’s Twitter takeover.)

"Today we open formal infringement proceedings against X on suspected breach of obligations to counter illegal content and disinformation; suspected breach of transparency obligations; and suspected deceptive design of the user interface," Breton wrote.

The investigation into "deceptive design" specifically targets the controversial use of "blue check" marks, which were previously reserved for verified public figures like ministers and celebrities. However, under the ownership of Musk, these verifications are now available to users who pay for the privilege. The EU will investigate whether the search algorithms of X prioritize blue-tick accounts that users might mistake as coming from verified sources.

Moreover, the commission has launched its formal proceedings based on its initial investigation after sending a letter to X on October 10, claiming that the platform exploits illegal content and disinformation about the Hamas attack on Israel in early October and subsequent events.

The commission will assess the effectiveness of the X Community Notes tool in countering "information manipulation" within the EU, given that they lack investment in compliance with European languages and are perennially short of content moderators. Additionally, the commission will scrutinize other X policies that mitigate risks to civic discourse and electoral processes.

However, the commission reveals that the investigation has no fixed timeframe and the duration will depend on the complexities involved. If deemed appropriate, unspecified "interim measures" may be applied before the conclusion of the investigation.

Experts warn that DSA compliance could increase censorship in Europe and the U.S.

Experts warn that the compliance of big tech companies with the DSA could lead to increased censorship not only in Europe but also in the United States.

"The DSA is just the latest example of the European Union targeting American tech companies with burdensome regulations that seek to export a more censorious content moderation regime around the globe," said James Czerniawski, a Senior Policy Analyst at Americans for Prosperity.

The European law, applicable to companies with over 45 million users in the EU, includes American giants such as Facebook, X, Instagram, and YouTube. The DSA seeks to address unlawful posts, fight disinformation, hoaxes and manipulation during pandemics, as well as protect vulnerable groups. Additionally, the law incentivizes platforms to implement worldwide moderation.

The DSA's priorities include mitigating systemic risks like manipulation and disinformation while safeguarding fundamental rights, including freedom of speech.

However, critics argue that the lack of accuracy may lead to selective enforcement, especially in comparison to the more concrete laws in the United States. But then, experts predict that social media platforms will adopt their policies to avoid financial penalties, potentially curbing protected American user speech.

"Silicon Valley platforms will have a strong incentive to skew their global content moderation policies and standards towards Europe rather than the original civil-libertarian techno-optimistic ideals," explained Jacob Mchangama, the CEO of Justitia.

For instance, Elon Musk, the owner of X, has already indicated compliance with the DSA. Musk, known for advocating free speech, has taken steps to reduce speech restrictions on X but has also implemented measures that advanced censorship during his ownership.

As the DSA takes full effect, concerns are rising about its impact on freedom of expression. Joel Thayer, president of the Digital Progress Institute, warned: "Americans are more likely to wake up to an even more 'woke' internet when the EU law is in full swing."

Visit BigTech.news for more news about Twitter.

Watch the Health Ranger Mike Adams and Maria Zeee deliver a message about censorship to Elon Musk.

This video is from the SamsTwitch channel on Brighteon.com.

More related stories:

Ukraine calls for more social media censorship of "disinformation."

Latest 'Twitter Files' reveal Biden officials colluded with Twitter on widespread censorship of medical experts.

Twitter yielding to more government CENSORSHIP demands under Musk leadership.

STUDY: Twitter censorship shockingly on rise after Elon Musk takeover.

Twitter censorship: "Shadow banning" is written into the platform's new terms.

Sources include:

ReclaimtheNet.org

TheGuardian.com

DailyCaller.com 1

DailyCaller.com 2

Brighteon.com



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