Twitter Quits EU Code Of Practice On Disinformation

The EU remains ready to enforce legal obligations on disinformation against Twitter, industry commissioner Thierry Breton has said, in spite of the social media platform having left a voluntary code of practice related to the issue.

Breton announced that Twitter had withdrawn from the code of practice in a message on Twitter late on Friday. The company itself has not confirmed the move or responded to requests for comment.

“Obligations remain. You can run but you can’t hide,” Breton wrote, noting that companies such as Twitter will be legally obliged to fight disinformation under new rules coming into effect on 25 August.

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

Thierry Breton. Image credit: European Parliament

Legal obligations

At least one unnamed official was cited in media reports late last week as saying Twitter was likely to leave the EU voluntary code of practice against disinformation.

The code, launched last June, includes obligations such as providing regular progress reports on how much advertising revenue a company has averted from disinformatio actors, the number or value of political advertisements accepted or rejected and instances of manipulative behaviours detected.

In February the European Commission criticised Twitter’s compliance with the code, saying its efforts were falling short of those of its peers.

Other companies signed up to the code include Facebook and Instagram parent Meta, TikTok, Google, Microsoft and Twitch.


But Twitter is said to have greatly reduced its moderation teams under Elon Musk, who acquired the company last October, and who has since reduced the company’s headcount by more than half in order to cut costs.

The company formerly had a dedicated team for coordinated disinformation campaigns, for instance, but those who staffed it have mostly resigned or been laid off, according to industry watchers and former Twitter employees.

The Digital Services Act (DSA), set to come into force on 25 August, legally obliges platforms with more than 45 million monthly active users in the EU – including Twitter – to take measures to remove illegal content.

Matthew Broersma

Matt Broersma is a long standing tech freelance, who has worked for Ziff-Davis, ZDnet and other leading publications

Recent Posts

Google Must Face Trial In Ad Tech Monopoly Case

Google loses bid for summary judgement as judge says 'too many facts in dispute' as…

9 hours ago

Silicon In Focus Podcast: Feeding the Machine

Learn how your business can meet the challenges associated with managing data across multiple platforms…

10 hours ago

Apple, Meta Likely To Face EU Antitrust Charges

Apple, Facebook parent Meta reportedly likely to face EU antitrust charges before August under new…

10 hours ago

Adobe Shares Jump On AI Success

Adobe shares post biggest gains in more than four years after it reports user take-up…

10 hours ago

Winklevoss’ Gemini To Pay $50m In Crypto Fraud Settlement

Winklevoss twins' Gemini Trust to pay $50m to settle cypto fraud claims over failed Gemini…

11 hours ago

Meta Delays EU AI Launch After Privacy Complaints

Meta delays Europe launch of AI in Europe after user, privacy group complaints over plans…

11 hours ago