Formerly Twitter Tops Disinformation Ranking in European Commission Study


The pioneering social media giant, formerly known as Twitter, has the highest proportion of disinformation among six major social networks, according to a recent European Commission study. The comprehensive investigation dissected over 6,000 distinct social media posts from various platforms such as Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, TikTok, formerly Twitter, and YouTube.

This analytical review was specifically significant in three countries – Spain, Poland, and Slovakia – believed to be especially susceptible to the rising tide of disinformation. The study discovered that the platform with the largest propensity to disseminate disinformation was previously called Twitter while YouTube appeared to be the most immune to it.

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The European Union’s outspoken Values and Transparency Commissioner, Vera Jourova, voiced stern warnings to the social media behemoth stating that the company must adhere to stringent regulations. As part of her remarks, she emphasized the necessity for compliance with the EU’s Digital Services Act (DSA), which successfully governs the behaviour of major tech platforms.

Previously known as Twitter and several other social platforms willingly signed up to a voluntary code of practice in 2018 put forth by TrustLab, a startup dedicated to monitoring disinformation. However, it’s worth noting that the company decided to backtrack from the code under the leadership of stalwart entrepreneur Mr. Musk. Despite this, the company cannot sidestep the DSA, and any failure to abide by it could attract heavy fines, amounting up to six percent of global turnover.

The social media giant’s role in amplifying the reach of disinformation, particularly in the context of the crippling Ukrainian conflict and Russian state-backed accounts, drew criticism from the European Union. Ms Jourova addressed this concern, outlining the need for tackling the spread of falsehoods and half-truths, which she aptly described as “a multi-million euro weapon of mass manipulation.”

The eminent commissioner also expressed concern about the potential use of AI-generated disinformation in the run-up to the forthcoming European elections, affirming her plans to meet with representatives from OpenAI to discuss countermeasures.

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