More than half a year has passed since Facebook, Google and Twitter promised the EU to step up its fight against fake news. But not much has happened, and the European Commission is disappointed.
The European Commission is rebuking Google, Facebook, and Twitter for not having acted against fake news as they've promised seven months ago. Especially in light of the approaching European elections, which will take place from May 23 to 26, this is reasonable.
The Commission is particularly critical of the danger of fake news interfering during the current election campaign and in the national elections in Belgium, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, Greece, Poland, Portugal and Ukraine in the coming months. A joint statement states:
More needs to be done to strengthen the integrity of their services, including advertising services
Among other things, the Commission's report criticized Google and Twitter for failing to develop and implement guidelines for identifying and disclosing issue-based before the upcoming EU elections. Facebook, on the other hand, although it had excavated a Russian fake network that disseminated false reports targeting Ukraine, did not provide any information on the extent to which the network also may have affected users in the EU.
Overall, the data provided by the three companies are not detailed enough to show how and to what extent they are fighting the spread of disinformation in the EU.
Just one of many complaints from the EU Commission
Most recently, the European Commission reprimanded Facebook and Twitter for, among other things, their failure to comply with European consumer protection regulations. Twitter and Facebook users would not be informed in time and sufficiently about the threat of deletions of supposedly illegal content, and there wouldn't be enough of an opportunity to lodge complaints about threatened or already deleted content. Mark Zuckerberg's companies were regularly in focus because of the data exchange between Facebook and WhatsApp as well.