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EU Commission names social platform X leading disinformation source

by Martin Fornusek September 26, 2023 6:09 PM 2 min read
European Commission Vice President in charge of Values and Transparency, Vera Jourova speaks during a press conference in Brussels, Belgium on Sept. 26, 2023. (Photo credit: Dursun Aydemir/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)
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The social platform X, formerly known as Twitter, is the largest source of misinformation and disinformation among the major online platforms, the EU Commission Vice President Vera Jourova said on Sept. 26.

The official said so during the meeting with the Code of Practice on Disinformation signatories, including major players such as Facebook, Google, YouTube, TikTok, and LinkedIn.

The Code's parties have pledged to combat online disinformation through cooperation with fact-checkers, ensuring transparency of advertising, and demonetizing disinformation content, among other methods.

The platform X, known as Twitter at the time, withdrew its participation from the Code in May this year, several months after its acquisition by billionaire Elon Musk.

Jourova noted that compared to the signatories of the Code, X has the highest ratio of misinformation and disinformation posts.

She emphasized that the threat of Russian disinformation in particular has been rising since the start of the full-scale invasion of Ukraine.

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"The Russian state has engaged in the war of ideas to pollute our information space with half-truths and lies to create a false image that democracy is no better than autocracy," Jourova said.

In the first months of the war, Musk aided Ukraine in its fight against Russia by providing it with the Starlink satellite internet system operated by his company SpaceX. In October 2022, the businessman briefly threatened to cut the free support for Starlink in Ukraine before signing a contract with the U.S. government to continue the system's operation.

Media reports emerged later claiming that the billionaire had been in contact with Russian senior officials during the full-scale war and even foiled a Ukrainian strike against the Russian Navy.

Musk says he denied request to turn on Starlink in Crimea to prevent attack on Russia’s fleet
Elon Musk said he had received a request “from government authorities” to activate Starlink, operated by his spacecraft manufacturer SpaceX, “all the way to Sevastopol.” He didn’t specify who exactly had sent the request. “The obvious intent being to sink most of the Russian fleet at anchor. If I ha…

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