Elon Musk’s X rebuts EU allegations of ‘illegal’ content about the Israel-Hamas conflict

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Linda Yaccarino: CEO of X speaking with CNBC’s Sara Eisen on Aug. 10th, 2023.

CNBC

Linda Yaccarino, CEO of X, formerly known as Twitter, on Thursday laid out how the social media platform is tackling potential illegal content related to the Israel-Hamas conflict after one of the European Union’s top regulators said it had seen signs that the service was being used to spread disinformation.

The militant Palestinian group Hamas launched an attack on Israel over the weekend. Hamas has been designated a terrorist organization by the U.S., Japan, Australia, Israel, the European Union and many other countries.

In a letter posted on X, Yaccarino said that after the Hamas attack on Israel, the social media firm “assembled a leadership group to assess the situation.”

X has “identified and removed hundreds of Hamas-affiliated accounts” since the start of the war, Yaccarino said.

The CEO also detailed the company’s policies around violent speech, synthetic or manipulated media and perpetrators of violent attacks.

“X is committed to serving the public conversation, especially in critical moments like this and understands the importance of addressing any illegal content that may be disseminated through the platform,” Yaccarino said.

“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.”

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Yaccarino said so far, X has responded to more than 80 take down requests received in the EU “within required timelines in a diligent and objective manner.” She asked the European Commission to “provide more detail” of the alleged illegal content on X. The CEO added that the company has not received any notices from Europol relating to illegal content on the service.

Breton also sent a similar letter to Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg this week, urging him to be “vigilant” regarding content in relation to the Israel-Hamas conflict.

The EU continues to ramp up scrutiny of Big Tech. In April, under the DSA, the European Commission designated 19 companies, including Apple and Amazon, as “very large” online platforms, meaning that they will come under closer monitoring under the regulations.



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