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EU investigates X for disinformation between Israel and Hamas to test new tech rules

The European Commission has launched an investigation into

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European industry chief Thierry Breton announced the investigation on Thursday, after also reprimanding social media platforms TikTok and Meta this week for misinformation.

All three platforms have seen an increase in false and misleading information since Hamas’s attack on Israel on October 7.

X, TikTok and Meta are under pressure to remove illegal and harmful content from their platforms, in line with the Digital Services Act (DSA), which came into force in the EU in November last year.

The law requires very large online platforms and search engines to do more to combat illegal content and risks to public safety, and to protect their services against manipulation techniques.

“We have sent @X a formal request for information, a first step in our investigation to determine compliance with the DSA,” Breton said in a post on THURSDAY.

Earlier Thursday, X CEO Linda Yaccarino said the platform had removed hundreds of Hamas-affiliated accounts and taken steps to remove or label tens of thousands of pieces of content since the attack, in response to a letter sent by Breton to X on Tuesday.

Elon Musk, the owner of X, said in a statement post friday that the EU “has still not provided any examples of disinformation”.

Researchers say Musk’s decision to remove academics’ free access to a data tool earlier this year makes it harder to track keywords and hashtags, forcing them to manually sift through content to trace disinformation.

Since taking over Twitter, Musk has cut staff to cut costs, including those who worked on content moderation, identifying and removing coordinated propaganda campaigns and curating trusted content.

(with Reuters)


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