TikTok, Facebook, Twitter, Google and others agree to take tougher line against disinformation

June 16, 2022 0 Comments

TikTok, Facebook, Microsoft, Google, Twitter, and other tech companies have all agreed to follow a new set of rules made by the EU to fight fake news online, The Verge reported on June 16.

The new rules require the companies to work harder to stop fake news and propaganda from spreading on their platforms and to share more detailed information about their work with EU member states. They might face substantial fines and sanctions if they fail to do so.

“Very large platforms that repeatedly break the Code and do not carry out risk mitigation measures properly risk fines of up to 6% of their global turnover,” Thierry Breton, Commissioner for Internal Market, said.

Sanctions may include banning companies from Europe. “If there is the consistent flouting of the rules, we can also think about stopping their access to our space of information,” EU industry chief Thierry Breton told the news conference.

Companies that sign up to the new rules have six months to meet their commitments and must submit a progress report by early 2023.

“This new anti-disinformation Code comes at a time when Russia is weaponizing disinformation as part of its military aggression against Ukraine, but also when we see attacks on democracy more broadly,” said the Commission’s vice president for values and transparency, Věra Jourová, in a press statement.

To monitor, review and adapt the commitments in view of technological, societal, market, and legislative developments, a Task Force has been established by the European Commission. Today the Task Force already held its first kick-off meeting. It will meet as necessary and at least every 6 months.

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