The European Union has reportedly threatened to ban Twitter unless Elon Musk abides by its strict content moderation rules.
The warning, which was reported by the Financial Times, could be the start of a regulatory battle across Europe over the future of social media platforms.
Thierry Breton, the EU’s industry chief, made the threat during a video conference with Musk on Wednesday, the news outlet said, citing people familiar with the matter.
Breton told the world’s richest man he must abide by a list of rules set out in the EU’s new Digital Services Act.
According to the report, these include calls to drop an “arbitrary” approach to recovering banned users and agree to an “extensive independent audit” of the platform by next year.
The landmark law aims to set a global standard for how tech giants police internet content
In the conversation provided by Breton, he told Musk: “There is still a lot of work to be done in the future, because Twitter must
Enforce transparent user policies, significantly strengthen content moderation and protect free speech, address
Be determined to spread disinformation and limit targeted advertising. “
Breton also called on Musk to apply strict rules on advertising under new EU digital requirements, including prohibiting targeting children or users based on sensitive information.
As a result, the two agreed that the EU will conduct a “stress test” at Twitter’s headquarters early next year to assess whether the company is abiding by the rules.
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What did Musk do after taking over Twitter?
While Musk has yet to comment publicly on the report, he has previously said Twitter will abide by all relevant laws.
The 51-year-old, who completed the $44bn (£38bn) takeover of Twitter in October, has since made some controversial decisions about running the site.
The Tesla billionaire then made headlines lay off about half of the company’s 8,000 employeesincluding 15 percent in the trust and safety sector.
He also reinstated previously banned accounts on the platform, including one belonging to donald trump After conducting a Twitter poll asking users if they wanted to see him back.
Kanye West, who was banned from the site for making anti-Semitic comments, also saw his account reactivated.
Last week, Musk announced that he ‘Amnesty’ to be granted to suspended Twitter accounts – prompting experts to predict an increase in harassment, hate speech and misinformation.