The European Union has deepened its investigation into Elon Musk’s social network X, which launched in December, under the Digital Services Act (DSA), the bloc’s rulebook for online governance and content moderation. For Musk, confirming violations of the system could be costly, as enforcers have the power to impose fines of up to 6% of global annual turnover.

On Wednesday, the Commission said it had sent a formal request for information (RFI) to Concerns about shortcomings in researcher access rights.

The RFI also addresses some new concerns, with the EU saying it is asking X about its content moderation activities and resources, following its latest transparency report (another DSA requirement), which shows X has cut headcount on its content moderation team Nearly 10%. Ranked fifth (20%) since the last report in October 2023.

The report also revealed that This question was raised when addressing content harm issues.

Another new concern for the EU concerns X’s generative AI approach. The committee said it was seeking further details on “risk assessments and mitigation measures related to the impact of generating artificial intelligence tools on electoral processes, the spread of illegal content and the protection of fundamental rights”.

X is regulated under the DSA as a so-called Very Large Online Platform (VLOP), which means it is subject to an extra layer of rules (overseen by the Commission itself) requiring it to assess and mitigate systemic risks in areas such as disinformation risk.

“Today’s request for information is a further step in the ongoing investigation,” the EU said in a press release. “It builds on the collection and analysis of evidence carried out to date, including the Transparency report and X’s response to previous information requests regarding, among other things, risk mitigation measures associated with generating artificial intelligence.”

Back in March, the Commission sent a series of RFIs to a number of VLOPs, including X, requesting more information about their approach to handling risks associated with the use of generated artificial intelligence. The European Union is concerned about the role political deepfakes could play in next month’s upcoming European Parliament elections.

X’s latest RFI gives the platform until May 17 to answer questions about content moderation resources and generated artificial intelligence. It has until May 27 to provide the committee with other requested information.

We reached out to X for response on this story, but it had not commented as of press time.

At a briefing with reporters last month, a senior committee official declined to provide a full update on the X investigation but said contact with the company was “pretty close.”

The official also confirmed that an active discussion thread related to X’s community annotation feature, which crowdsources additional context to appear on controversial posts — something that X under Musk considers part of its content moderation Primary Methodology – adding that it was unclear whether the company’s approach was robust enough to address election risks.

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