Thierry Breton, European Commissioner for Internal Market and Services, informed that Twitter decided to withdraw from the European Union (EU) code of best practices against disinformation on the Internet.
The commissioner used Elon Musk's social network to make the announcement and issue a blunt warning to the communication platform. "You can run, but you can't hide," Breton wrote in his post, adding that while the code of practice is currently voluntary, the censorship measures will soon be permanent under the EU's Digital Services Act (DSA).
"Fighting disinformation will be legal obligation under #DSA as of August 25. Our teams will be ready for enforcement," he said.
Elon Musk has been rolling back controls on the social network since he acquired it and has even eliminated jobs related to content moderation. All this as the EU expands its code of best practice that requires technology companies such as Google, TikTok, Microsoft and Meta to account for their algorithms and report on their content moderation practices.
Twitter leaves EU voluntary Code of Practice against disinformation.
But obligations remain. You can run but you can’t hide.
Beyond voluntary commitments, fighting disinformation will be legal obligation under #DSA as of August 25.
Our teams will be ready for enforcement.
— Thierry Breton (@ThierryBreton) May 26, 2023
From voluntary measures to legal obligations
Although periodic reports on companies' progress in the fight against disinformation were optional, the Digital Services Act(DSA) will come into force in a few months, requiring stricter standards from technology platforms.
Not only will companies need to increase moderation to prevent misinformation, but they will also need to increase their protocols to block the spread of harmful material. Platforms will also be obliged to be more transparent about interactions with users.
The consequences of not complying with the law
According to a European Commission official, once the DSA comes into force, fines could be applied up to 6% of the platform's global profits that fail to comply with the obligations. This fine would be in place, at least for the first violation, but it is not yet clear whether continued non-compliance could lead to banning any social network or platform.