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Will Elon Musk Face Consequences as EU Threatens Twitter’s Failure to Censor “Disinformation

The European Union (EU) has recently issued a stern warning to Elon Musk regarding Twitter’s non-compliance with the EU’s demands to censor what they deem as “disinformation” on their platform. The threat came directly from the European Union’s Internal Markets Commissioner, Thierry Breton. Breton confirmed that Twitter had abandoned the EU’s code of practice aimed at combating disinformation. In a tweet, Breton cautioned Twitter, stating that the platform cannot evade its responsibilities when it comes to content censorship. This article will delve into the details of the EU’s threat, the Digital Services Act (DSA), and the potential consequences for Twitter and its owner, Elon Musk.

Failure to Comply with Censorship Obligations

Thierry Breton’s tweet warning Twitter, “You can run but you can’t hide,” emphasizes the EU’s stance on content censorship. Beyond voluntary commitments, the fight against disinformation will soon become a legal obligation under the DSA, effective August 25. Breton further asserted that the EU’s teams would be prepared to enforce these obligations. The reference to the DSA highlights the significance of this legislation in regulating social media platforms operating within Europe.

The Digital Services Act (DSA)

The DSA represents a comprehensive set of rules designed to govern social media platforms across Europe. These rules demand active policing and censorship of user-generated content by prominent tech companies, under the risk of facing fines of up to 6% of their global turnover. While the current code of practice remains voluntary, the DSA will make content censorship legally binding.

Obligations Under the Current Code of Practice

Prior to the implementation of the DSA, social media companies have certain obligations in place to address disinformation. These include preventing the monetization of false information, monitoring political advertisements, and enabling third-party access to their algorithms. However, Twitter failed to submit a report on its adherence to these obligations in February, leading to outrage from the EU.

DSA: A Binding Law for Major Platforms

Unlike the voluntary nature of the current code of practice, the DSA will enforce compliance with its regulations on major social media platforms. Twitter, alongside other significant platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, YouTube, TikTok, Pinterest, Snapchat, and LinkedIn, will be required to adhere to the DSA if they wish to continue operating in Europe. Failure to comply may result in severe consequences for these platforms.

Elon Musk’s Accountability

Thierry Breton has consistently expressed his intent to hold Elon Musk accountable for Twitter’s failure to comply with EU content rules. As the owner of Twitter, Musk will likely face scrutiny and potential repercussions due to the platform’s non-compliance with the EU’s regulations.


The European Union’s threat to Elon Musk regarding Twitter’s failure to censor what they deem as “disinformation” underscores the EU’s determination to enforce content regulations. With the impending implementation of the DSA, social media platforms will be legally bound to actively police and censor user-generated content. Twitter’s non-compliance with the current code of practice has raised concerns and increased the EU’s resolve to ensure adherence to its content rules. As the owner of Twitter, Elon Musk may face significant accountability for the platform’s actions. The coming months will reveal the impact of the EU’s threat and the consequences for Twitter’s operations in Europe.

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