Elon Musk’s X facing landmark EU investigation | Science & Tech News

Elon Musk’s X is being investigated by the EU over its efforts to combat disinformation and harmful content.

The social media platform, formerly known as Twitter, is the first to be probed under the bloc’s Digital Services Act.

It came into force in November 2022 and requires large online companies to do more to tackle illegal content and perceived security risks.

The landmark inquiry into X comes after Mr Musk clashed with European Commissioner Thierry Breton, who warned the billionaire to do more to tackle disinformation about the Israel-Hamas war.

Mr Breton also wrote to Meta, TikTok, and Google to remind them of their obligations under the act, and each highlighted steps they were taking to fight fake news.

But only X has received a formal request for information under the legislation.

The company said it would comply with the regulatory process.

EU concerned about X’s fact-checking

The investigation will cover X’s community notes feature, which allows users to flag false or misleading content.

An EU Commission spokesperson said it was concerned about the feature’s effectiveness.

It has largely taken the place of Twitter’s old fact-checking team, which Mr Musk gutted during mass lay-offs after purchasing the company last October.

Mr Musk himself has been fact-checked by the system, but claimed it was being gamed by state actors.

The investigation will also look into the change of policy around verification, with the once sought-after blue ticks now granted to anyone who pays a monthly subscription.

The commission said the probe would include further requests for information, interviews, and inspections.

Should X be found in breach of the act, it could face a fine of up to 6% of its global turnover.

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