The European Union is reminding TikTok of its “particular obligation” to moderate its content, specifically when it comes to the current war between Hamas and Israel.
In a letter to TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew, EU commissioner Thierry Breton said it appears the app is being used to “disseminate illegal content and disinformation” about the conflict in the Middle East.
Notably, Breton said the app was obligated to protect its younger users from “violent content depicting hostage taking” and other graphic content without appropriate safeguards.
He also said the app being used as a source of news means “reliable sources should be adequately differentiated from terrorist propaganda,” including separating falsified images and facts from true information.
Notice of this sort of circulating illegal content requires “timely, diligent and objective” action on the platform’s part to remove the content and mitigate risk of it appearing again, the EU official said.
“Let me remind you that the Digital Services Act sets very precise obligations regarding content moderation,” Breton wrote. “As foreseen in the DSA, you need to put in place appropriate and proportionate measures to guarantee a high level of privacy, safety and security.”
It’s a similar warning European regulators have recently sent to X, formerly known as Twitter, and to Meta over a surge of misinformation related to the war spreading on the platforms.
TikTok now has 24 hours to respond before the open investigation can find it in “non-compliance” in regards to content moderation, which could result in the EU imposing penalties.