NEWS3 January 2024

European Commission begins formal investigation into X

Europe News Public Sector Technology

EUROPE – The European Commission has opened formal proceedings examining whether X, formerly known as Twitter, has breached the Digital Services Act (DSA).

EU Commission HQ

The commission said that it was looking at X’s policies in areas such as content moderation, ‘dark patterns’, risk management, advertising transparency and data access for researchers.

The decision to open formal proceedings follows a preliminary investigation carried out last year that included an analysis of a risk assessment submitted by X in September and X’s transparency report published on 3rd November.

The EU Commission’s preliminary investigation also concerned X’s responses to formal requests for information concerning, among other issues, the dissemination of content about Hamas’ attacks on Israel.

The formal investigation will focus on a number of areas, including whether X has complied with DSA obligations to counter the dissemination of illegal content in the EU and the effectiveness of measures taken to combat ‘information manipulation’ on the X platform.

Measures taken by X to increase the transparency of its platform and a “suspected deceptive design” of its user interface relating to checkmarks linked to certain subscription products are also part of the investigation.

The European Commission said that if proven, the issues would constitute infringements of Articles 34( 1 ), 34( 2 ) and 35( 1 ), 16( 5 ) and 16( 6 ), 25( 1 ), 39 and 40( 12 ) of the DSA.

The opening of formal proceedings empowers the commission to take further enforcement steps, such as interim measures, and non-compliance decisions. The commission is also empowered to accept any commitment made by X to remedy on the matters subject to the proceeding.