Meeting between Emmanuel Macron and Elon Musk: Twitter must make an effort on content moderation

Meeting between Emmanuel Macron and Elon Musk: Twitter must make an effort on content moderation

Traveling to the United States, President Emmanuel Macron met Elon Musk, the new boss of the social network Twitter on Friday in New Orleans. There was talk of “moderation” of content, the company having changed policy since the takeover of the billionaire.

The president said he had a discussion “clear and sincere” with Elon Musk. In the program “transparent terms of use, significant reinforcement of content moderation and protection of freedom of expression: Twitter must make the effort to comply with European regulations”underlined Emmanuel Macron who recalls “there is no place for terrorist and violent extremist content anywhere”.

We will work with Twitter to improve the protection of children online. Elon Musk confirmed it to me today. Let’s better protect our children online! https://t.co/G31YgUFV6c

—Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) December 3, 2022

Elon Musk has confirmed Twitter’s participation in the Christchurch Call, as well as his willingness “to improve the protection of children online”. The French president and the whimsical entrepreneur, also boss of Tesla, also discussed future green industrial projects, in particular the manufacture of electric vehicles and batteries.

In line with our ambition to decarbonise and reindustrialise France and Europe, I spoke today with @elonmusk on future green industrial projects, in particular on the manufacture of electric vehicles and batteries. pic.twitter.com/oMwcejKGx6

—Emmanuel Macron (@EmmanuelMacron) December 3, 2022

Thursday, Ella Irwin, the new director of the trust and safety division (“confidence and safety” in French, editor’s note) of Twitter had held her first press conference since the takeover of the network. Twitter now relies on automation for content moderation and favors distribution restrictions rather than the immediate removal of certain publications.

Twitter also places greater restrictions on hashtags that may cause abuse, and search results in certain areas, including child exploitation, Irwin added. “The biggest change is that the team can now react faster and as aggressively as needed”she said.

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The statements come as researchers reported an uptick in hate speech on the platform after Elon Musk announced an amnesty for some accounts suspended by the previous management team.

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Ella Irwin explained that Elon Musk encourages the team to focus on security, the company’s priority, instead of worrying about user growth or revenue. “He stresses (that safety is the priority) every day, several times a day.” The company’s willingness and ability to moderate harmful and illegal content has been in question since Elon Musk fired half of its employees.