Last Updated: October 12, 2023, 15:39 IST
Elon Musk’s social media platform X has removed hundreds of Hamas-affiliated accounts and taken down or labeled thousands of pieces of content since the Palestinian outfit’s attack on Israel, its chief executive officer (CEO) Linda Yaccarino said on Thursday. These remarks come in response to EU industry chief Thierry Breton’s ultimatum to Elon Musk to tackle the spread of disinformation on X since the Hamas assault to comply with new EU online content rules.
CEO Yaccarino outlined efforts by X, formerly known as Twitter, to get a handle on illegal content flourishing on the platform. “So far since the start of the conflict X has identified and removed hundreds of Hamas-affiliated accounts from the platform,” Yaccarino said in a letter posted on X.
Everyday we’re reminded of our global responsibility to protect the public conversation by ensuring everyone has access to real-time information and safeguarding the platform for all our users. In response to the recent terrorist attack on Israel by Hamas, we’ve redistributed… https://t.co/VR2rsK0J9K— Linda Yaccarino (@lindayaX) October 12, 2023
The platform is “proportionately and effectively assessing and addressing identified fake and manipulated content during this constantly evolving and shifting crisis,” she wrote in response to the request from Breton, the digital enforcer for the 27-nation bloc. Under the EU’s Digital Services Act, which took effect in August, social media companies have to step up policing of their platforms for illegal content, under threat of hefty fines.
“There is no place on X for terrorist organizations or violent extremist groups and we continue to remove such accounts in real time, including proactive efforts,” Yaccarino said. X has taken action to “remove or label tens of thousands of pieces of content” and pointed out that Community Notes — a feature that allows users to add their own fact-checks to posts — is “visible on thousands of posts, generating millions of impressions.”
A recent study commissioned by the EU found that X is the worst-performing platform for online disinformation since billionaire Musk acquired it last year and changed its name. Other platforms like TikTok, YouTube and Facebook also are dealing with a surge in rumors and falsehoods about the Middle Eastern conflict, The Associated Press reported.
(With agency inputs)