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We are Fully Committed to Implementing Europe’s New Digital Law: TikTok Replies to EU

Yusuf Balogun
Yusuf Balogun
Yusuf is a law graduate and freelance journalist with a keen interest in tech reporting.

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The ByteDance-owned video hosting service, TikTok, has responded to the statement made by the top official of the European Union that the platform needs to improve on its content moderation to comply with the new European digital law – the Digital Services Act (DSA).

In October last year, the Union Parliament passed the Digital Services Act to regulate and update the exciting Electronic Commerce Directive 2000 regarding illegal content, transparent advertising, and disinformation. By August 25, the Act is expected to come into effect.

TikTok Must Improve its Content Moderation to Comply with Europe’s New Digital Law: Official

Ahead of this date, Thierry Breton, European Commissioner, has said the social media platform needs to do more to comply with the EU’s upcoming Act. In his words: “Recent events have shown the impact TikTok has on democracies and how important independent EU enforcement is,” he said. “Now is the time to accelerate to be fully compliant.”

Breton further added that the Chinese-owned company had agreed to carry out a stress test to help prepare, which had shown that more measures needed to be taken. When the Act comes into effect, all social media platforms in the region will be expected to control hate speech, disinformation, and other harmful and illegal material on their sites.

“Let me be clear on this: When I say online platforms have to publish ‘user numbers,’ I mean numbers, not some generic statements. We will not tolerate delaying tactics when it comes to enforcing the DSA; we will take action and go after the companies which have not complied, – Breton.”

One of the 19 companies named by the EU as a Very Large Online Platform (VLOP) and, as such, subject to more stringent regulations is TikTok. They’ll be required to keep an eye on and manage risk, perform independent external audits, communicate information with the appropriate authorities, and adopt a code of conduct. Any violation of the Act might result in fines of up to 6% of yearly revenues.

We are Fully Committed to Implementing the Act: TikTok

Reacting to the statement, Caroline Greer, TikTok’s Brussels-based public policy official, said the platform is fully committed to implementing the new Europe’s digital law – Digital Services Act. 

“TikTok is fully committed to implementing the DSA and enhancing transparency and accountability,” says Caroline Greer. We welcome these opportunities to be open about our efforts and look forward to continuing to engage with the EU Commission.”

However, in a previous meeting to discuss stress testing, Breton stated that Twitter was taking the exercise “very seriously,” but that “work needed to continue.” Amazon, on the other hand, is currently contesting its classification as a VLOP, claiming that it is actually more of a retailer than a communication platform. The EU asserts that it will argue its case in court.


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