Tuesday May 10, 2022

Musk says he would reverse Twitter ban on Donald Trump

Musk says he would reverse Twitter ban on Donald Trump

Elon Musk and Donald Trump. File

Tesla Chief Executive Elon Musk said on Tuesday he would reverse Twitter's ban on former US President Donald Trump, while speaking at the Financial Times Future of the Car conference.

The decision to ban Trump from the social media platform was "morally wrong and flat-out stupid," Musk said.

Elon Musk, who is offering to buy Twitter, has given his support to a new European Union law aimed at protecting social media users from harmful content after he met with the bloc's single market chief.

EU Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton told The Associated Press on Tuesday that he outlined to Musk how the bloc’s online regulations aim to uphold free speech while also making sure whatever is illegal "will be forbidden in the digital space,” which Musk "fully agreed with.”

Musk says he would reverse Twitter ban on Donald Trump

In a video Breton tweeted late Monday, Musk said the two had a "great discussion" and that he agrees with the Digital Services Act, which is expected to get final approval later this year.

It will make big tech companies like Twitter, Google and Facebook parent Meta police their platforms more strictly for illegal or harmful content like hate speech and disinformation or face billions in fines.

Musk's plan to buy Twitter for $44 billion has raised fears he would make changes to the platform that would prioritize free speech over online safety - potentially putting him at odds with the looming rules in Europe, which has led a global movement to crack down on the power of tech giants.

The 65-second clip indicates Musk's and the EU's views may be closer than they appear. Breton says in the video that he explained the Digital Services Act to Musk in a meeting at Tesla's Texas headquarters. Musk responds by saying it's "exactly aligned with my thinking.”

"I agree with everything you said, really,” Musk said. "I think we’re very much of the same mind and, you know, I think anything that my companies can do that can be beneficial to Europe, we want to do that.”

Agencies

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