L’Ue allarga a Meta e TikTok l’indagine per disinformazione sul conflitto fra Israele e Hamas thumbnail

The EU extends its investigation for disinformation on the conflict between Israel and Hamas to Meta and TikTok

The information reaching us from the conflict between Israel and Hamas is increasingly bloody.

Together, we realize that some of the major and most emotionally destabilizing news stories are false or unverified. And this testifies to the difficulty of unraveling, in a war which adds the proliferation of fake news to the atrocities of two factions, Hamas and Israel, mutually deaf to the requests of others.

To limit ourselves to two of the most recent news, the beheading of 40 children by Hamas seems increasingly unverified. And there is still discussion to identify the perpetrator of the massacre (but even the number of deaths is disputed) in the parking lot of the hospital in Gaza, which occurred on Tuesday 17 October.

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The EU, social platforms and the conflict between Israel and Hamas

In recent days we told you how the European Commissioner for the Internal Market Thierry Breton sent four preliminary letters, to X (Twitter), Meta, TikTok and YouTube.

The invitation was to raise the level of vigilance on fake news regarding the war between Hamas and Israel, which was proliferating on company platforms.

As for X, given the severity and persistence of fake news (including videos taken from video games and passed off as Hamas missile attacks), Europe has done more. AND the EU Commission has opened an investigation. This is because, among other things, in the letter, sent on Tuesday 10 October, the company had 24 hours to adapt to European standards. Which he evidently didn’t do.

A similar action now concerns Meta and TikTok: the EU Commission has also opened an investigation into Mark Zuckerberg’s company and the Chinese company owned by ByteDance.

The EU Commission opens an investigation into Meta and TikTok

Although the tone of the other preliminary letters was more conciliatory than the one sent by the EU to

For this reason, Europe has also opened a formal investigation against them. Neither Meta nor TikTok are in fact acting in compliance with the Digital Service Act, which came into force on November 16, 2022. Currently, only YouTube has not been investigated.

Times (and possible fines)

The EU Commission asked Meta and TikTok to explain “the measures adopted to comply with their obligations regarding risk assessment and reduction”. The two companies will have to respond by October 25th.

After that date, they risk fines of up to 6% of their annual turnover, again according to the application of the Digital Service Act.

La multa is TikTok

As regards TikTok specifically, the Chinese social network will not only have to answer on the guarantees regarding the control of disinformation inherent to the conflict in Israel. But also demonstrate that you comply with community rules on the protection of minors online.

TikTok, in response to the preliminary letter, said it had removed over 500,000 videos and 8,000 live streams about the ongoing conflict.

We remind you that in recent weeks the European Privacy Guarantor has fined the ByteDance platform 345 million euros for the processing of data of minor users and for its age verification procedures. Although it should be added that the sanction refers to a complaint three years ago, and in the meantime the app has adapted to EU regulations at least in this sense.

Breton’s statements

Thierry Breton spoke on the disinformation inherent to the conflict between Israel and Hamas on Wednesday 18 October.

Commissioner Breton told the European Parliament: “The widespread dissemination of illicit content and fake news carries a clear risk of stigmatizing certain communities and destabilizing our democratic structures.”

And then, moving the discussion to the latest events in Europe: “The terrorist attacks of 13 October in Arras, France, and 16 October in Brussels remind us that the threat is real”.

Is X leaving Europe?

In light of the investigation opened by the EU against X, Elon Musk again did not respond within the expected timeframe.

While waiting to see how the Commission will behave, some rumors (also confirmed by Business Insider) in the last few hours gave X as being close to leaving Europe. But Musk himself has recently declared that “this is completely false news”.

Walker Ronnie is a tech writer who keeps you informed on the latest developments in the world of technology. With a keen interest in all things tech-related, Walker shares insights and updates on new gadgets, innovative advancements, and digital trends. Stay connected with Walker to stay ahead in the ever-evolving world of technology.