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Twitter Withdraws From EU Disinformation Code, Commissioner Says

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Twitter exited the voluntary European Union’s Code of Practice on Disinformation, the bloc’s Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton said.

Twitter Inc. was earlier this year the only major tech platform that didn’t send a complete report to the European Union under the code, which the company agreed to follow before it was taken over by Elon Musk in late 2022. Its report was short of data and didn’t include commitments from the social media company that it would empower fact-checkers, the EU’s executive arm said in February.

“Twitter leaves EU voluntary Code of Practice against disinformation. But obligations remain,” Breton said on his Twitter account late on Friday. “You can run but you can’t hide.”

He said that beyond voluntary commitments, fighting disinformation will become a legal obligation as of Aug. 25 under the EU Digital Services Act. Twitter will qualify as a “very large online platform,” requiring the company to address harmful content and submit annual risk assessments to the commission.

“Our teams will be ready for enforcement,” Breton tweeted.

Musk’s massive job cuts at Twitter — including the exodus of the company’s entire Brussels office — have raised concerns about whether it will be able to make the necessary changes to comply with the EU’s rules. Failing to follow the DSA could cost a business fines of as much as 6% of its annual revenue or even prompt the commission to ban a platform altogether.

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