Does Twitter still have the staff to enforce European regulations?
Tweets are linked and look alike. On November 20, Damien Viel, CEO of Twitter France, announced his departure from the company after 7 years. Elon Musk continues to purge workers from his social network, to the point of pushing European leaders wonder if there are any people left to apply current and future regulations.
Moderation, GDPR, DSA… There is no shortage of work!
The Financial Times Reported, on November 24, a small earthquake: Twitter’s small office in Brussels will close its doors. Regardless of its size, this place allowed a privileged contact with the authorities of the Old Continent. In addition to the office, two personalities Julia Mozer and Dario La Nasa were announced to leave. They are responsible for Twitter’s highly strategic digital policy in Europe.
It’s hard to tell if they’ve been fired or if they’ve resigned when Elon Musk asks his employees to work harder and harder. The Irish Data Protection Commission (DPC), which is responsible for Twitter, the company with its European headquarters in Dublin, in any case questioned Twitter’s ability to comply with the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) without staff to do so. The social network responded to the affirmative reports Wall Street Journal.
On a separate note, Věra Jourová, Commission Vice-President for Values and Transparency, expressed her concerns on Twitter, explaining, ” If you want to detect and act effectively against disinformation and propaganda, it takes resources “.
I am concerned about the news of the layoffs of so many Twitter staff in Europe. If you want to effectively identify and act against #disinformation & propaganda, it requires resources. Especially in the context of ?? disinformation warfare.https://t.co/Nji2w1ziiF
— Vera Jourova (@VeraJourova) November 24, 2022
Coincidentally or not, on 24 November the Commission published its 7th review of the Union’s code of conduct aimed at combating hate speech online. A code of conduct to which the major platforms adhere. Bad news, the number of notifications they reviewed in 24 hours down from 90.4% in 2020 to 64.4% this year. Twitter achieves the worst performance. Similar to the removal of notified hate messages, the platform went from 49.8% to 45.4% of notifications.
? Only 64% of reports of hate messages are now processed within 24 hours by platforms that have signed the EU Code of Conduct ??
This rate was over 90% in 2020.@Twitter recorded the biggest decline in a year.
→ https://t.co/pkG5g09ESq pic.twitter.com/UI5y2D7z1X
— European Commission ?? (@UEFrance) November 24, 2022
The data was collected from March to May 2022, before the acquisition of Elon Musk’s social network. However, the billionaire is doing nothing to reassure the European authorities. The latter submitted a survey to his subscribers, for or against a general amnesty for deleted Twitter accounts. This poll, which appeared to be a plebiscite, gave a 72.4% response in favor of the return of the evicted. from more than 3.1 million votes. A path that Musk seems to want to follow commenting ” Vox Populi vox dei “.
Twitter says all is well, EU doubts
Didier Reynders, European Commissioner for Justice, said he was disappointed with the evolution of the platform regarding the code of conduct against hate speech, ” I urge them to review their content moderation practices and quickly close any gaps “, he launched.
He traveled the same day, November 24, to Dublin to meet with Twitter representatives. He reiterated the concerns expressed by the DPC by saying, “ When it comes to decisions about staff reductions, we want to make sure resources are in place to protect user data “.
The European official reports received the assurance from Twitter that the prerogatives of the late Brussels office have been transferred to Dublin. The platform will still be able to apply the GDPR, combat hate speech online and prepare for the imminent arrival of the Digital Services Act. The future will tell.