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Monday, May 16, 2022

Elon Musk says Twitter will comply with EU content rules after takeover

The European Union agreed on the Digital Services Act last month, aiming to force tech platforms to better police content.

By: Bloomberg |
Updated: May 10, 2022 2:42:19 pm
Elon Musk is pictured here. He agrees to make Twitter abide by EU rulesMusk is aligned with the EU especially on the idea of making the algorithms more transparent, and on requiring companies to have consistent rules about banning people from platforms. (File photo)

Elon Musk said Twitter Inc. would comply with the European Union’s rules on content if he completes his proposed takeover, despite his plans to loosen restrictions on the network.

After meeting Musk in Texas on Monday, Thierry Breton, the EU’s internal market commissioner, said that he and the Tesla Inc. chief executive officer agreed on everything.

“To tell you the truth, there was definitely no disagreement — none,” Breton told Bloomberg in an interview.

Musk, who calls himself a free speech absolutist, has criticized Twitter’s content moderation policies. He has an agreement to buy the network for $44 billion, saying he will focus on “free speech” values. Breton previously warned that Twitter, even after a change of ownership, would have to comply with the EU’s new digital content rules.

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The European Union agreed on the Digital Services Act last month, aiming to force tech platforms to better police content. The rules mainly focus on taking down illegal content like terrorist posts and hate speech, but could also affect tech companies’ algorithms to down-rank harmful posts, such as messages harassing others or promoting eating disorders.

Musk is aligned with the EU especially on the idea of making the algorithms more transparent, and on requiring companies to have consistent rules about banning people from platforms.

“I agree with everything you said, really” Musk said in a video post after the two met in Texas on Monday. “I think we’re very much on the same line.”

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