EU Opens Probe Into X in the Middle of a Disinformation Crackdown

  • Elon Musk has made free speech a priority on X.
  • The platform has been criticized for disinformation and antisemitism in the wake of the war on Gaza.
  • The European Commission has opened an investigation into X.
  • X said it is committed to complying with the EU.

( – When Elon Musk bought Twitter, he said he was going to make it a place where free speech reigns. He renamed the platform X, and it became a place where people were allowed to express all of their opinions or say whatever they wanted. The billionaire has banned some accounts, but they have mainly been of people he personally doesn’t like or support. For example, he banned a student who posted the whereabouts of his private jet, even though the information was already publicly available.

The Tesla owner has come under fire recently for allowing racism, antisemitism, and fake news to run rampant on the site. Now, the European Union is investigating the platform.

Investigation Into X

On December 18, the European Union announced it opened formal proceedings into whether X might have breached the Digital Services Act (DSA). The agency is looking into the areas of content moderation, advertising transparency, risk management, data access for researchers, and dark patterns.

The announcement stated that the EU would focus on how effective the measures that X has taken to combat disinformation on the platform. Specifically, whether the Community Notes system in the EU and “the effectiveness of related policies mitigating risks to civic discourse and electoral processes.” It will also look into what steps the company has taken to increase transparency. Investigators will also look into a “suspected deceptive design of the user interface,” such as the blue checks linked to its subscription products. Finally, the EU is also investigating the dissemination of illegal content on the platform.

First Time

The investigation into X is the first time the European Union Commission has opened an investigation under the DSA. In April, the commission announced that all of the Very Large Online Platforms (VLOPs) and Very Large Online Search Engines (VLPSE) would all be regulated under the DSA. The list of platforms includes X, Instagram, Snapchat, Amazon, Google Search, TikTok, Meta’s Facebook, and 12 others.

EU Executive Vice President Margrethe Vestager explained the DSA is necessary because of the risks the “large platforms pose” to society. She said the commission takes “any breach of [its] rules very seriously.” Vestager explained that they currently have enough evidence to open formal proceedings.

X released a statement stating it’s “committed to complying” with the DSA.

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