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Musk given 24 hours to address graphic images of Hamas attacks

Musk given 24 hours to address graphic images of Hamas attacks

by host

Elon Musk has until the end of Wednesday to respond to demands from Brussels to remove graphic images and disinformation linked to the violence in Israel from his social network X — or face the full force of Europe’s new social media rules.

Thierry Breton, the European Union commissioner who oversees the bloc’s Digital Services Act (DSA) rules, wrote to the owner of X, formerly Twitter, to warn Musk of his obligations under the bloc’s content rules.

If Musk fails to comply, the EU’s rules state X could face fines of up to 6 percent of its revenue for potential wrongdoing. Under the regulations, social media companies are obliged to remove all forms of hate speech, incitement to violence and other gruesome images or propaganda that promote terrorist organizations.

Since Hamas launched its violent attacks on Israel on October 7, X has been flooded with images, videos and hashtags depicting — in graphic detail — how hundreds of Israelis have been murdered or kidnapped. Under X’s own policies, such material should also be removed immediately.

“I urge you to ensure a prompt, accurate and complete response to this request within the next 24 hours,” Breton wrote on X late Tuesday. “We will include your answer in our assessment file on your compliance with the DSA.”

Michelle Donelan, the British minister in charge of the U.K.’s separate online content rulebook, also plans to meet some media companies, including Google, Meta, X, TikTok and Snapchat, on Wednesday to remind them of their obligations to remove content involving antisemitism and extreme violence in the wake of the Hamas attacks.

“We are taking action to stand in solidarity with Israel and our Jewish community,” Donelan wrote on X.

A representative for X did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

In response to Breton’s post on X, Musk asked the French politician to outline how his social media company had potentially violated Europe’s content rules. “Our policy is that everything is open source and transparent,” he added. Breton replied: “Up to you to demonstrate that you walk the talk.”

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