Tags: Europe | Twitter | Disinformation

EU Calls out Twitter for Incomplete Disinformation Report

EU Calls out Twitter for Incomplete Disinformation Report

Thursday, 09 February 2023 08:01 AM EST

LONDON (AP) — Twitter failed to provide a full report to the European Union on its efforts to combat online disinformation, drawing a rebuke Thursday from top officials of the 27-nation bloc.

The company signed up to the EU's voluntary 2022 Code of Practice on Disinformation last year — before billionaire Tesla CEO Elon Musk bought the social media platform.

Under the code, online platforms including Google, TikTok, Facebook and Instagram parent Meta agreed to commit to measures aimed at reducing disinformation. They filed their first “baseline” reports last month showing how they're living up to their promises.

All who signed up to the voluntary code, which also includes ad-tech companies and civil society groups, submitted complete reports — except Twitter.

“I am disappointed to see that Twitter report lags behind others and I expect a more serious commitment to their obligations stemming from the Code,” Vera Jourova, the European Commission's executive vice president for values and transparency, said in a statement. “Russia is engaged also in a full-blown disinformation war and the platforms need to live up to their responsibilities.”

Twitter did not respond immediately to a request for comment. The social media company’s press office was shut down and its communications team laid off after Musk bought it last year.

EU leaders have grown alarmed about fake information thriving on online platforms, especially about the COVID-19 pandemic and Russian propaganda amid the war in Ukraine. Last year, the code was strengthened by connecting it with the upcoming Digital Services Act, new rules aimed at getting Big Tech companies to clean up their platforms or face big fines.

But Musk has raised concerns about what shows up on Twitter by ending enforcement of its policy against COVID-19 misinformation and other moves such as dissolving its Trust and Safety Council that advised on problems like hate speech and other harmful content.

Under the EU disinformation code, a standardized report includes data on how many advertising dollars flowing to “disinformation actors” were blocked; political ads that were labeled or rejected; examples of manipulative behavior such as fake accounts; and information on the impact of fact-checking.

Twitter’s report was “short of data, with no information on commitments to empower the fact-checking community,” the EU’s executive Commission said.

Thierry Breton, the commissioner overseeing digital policy, said it's “no surprise that the degree of quality” in the reports varies greatly, without mentioning Twitter.

TikTok, meanwhile, touted its efforts under the code to fight false information in Europe.

Caroline Greer, TikTok’s director of public policy and government relations, said in a blog post Thursday that the popular Chinese-owned video-sharing app would expand use of labels on content from state-controlled media and beef up work addressing the impact of misleading information resulting from Russia's war in Ukraine.

“We’ll continue to invest extensively as we work together with others to combat disinformation and promote authentic online experiences for our communities,” Greer said.

© Copyright 2024 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.


GlobalTalk
- Twitter failed to provide a full report to the European Union on its efforts to combat online disinformation, drawing a rebuke Thursday from top officials of the 27-nation bloc. The company signed up to the EU's voluntary 2022 Code of Practice on Disinformation last year...
Europe,Twitter,Disinformation
482
2023-01-09
Thursday, 09 February 2023 08:01 AM
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