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Elon Musk will have to follow “EU rules”, warns Brussels

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“The bird is free,” said the eccentric Elon Musk. But the volatile will still have to respect the rules of the game. In Europe, the social network Twitter, bought by the billionaire, will have to respect the regulations on the major platforms which have just been adopted, warned this Friday the European Market Commissioner interior Thierry Breton, initiator of this legislation.

In response to the boss of Tesla who tweeted Thursday evening “the bird is free” after taking control of the platform, acquired for 44 billion dollars, Thierry Breton replied: “In Europe, the bird will fly according to our rules Europeans”.

Defense of freedom of expression

The European commissioner linked to a video published last May showing him alongside the boss of Tesla in his car factory in Austin, Texas. The latter assured to be “on the same wavelength” as the European official about the new EU regulations on digital and its obligations imposed on platforms in terms of content moderation.

But the takeover of Twitter by Elon Musk worries a large part of Twitter employees, many users and NGOs who call on social networks to better fight harassment and misinformation. Because the multibillionaire, presenting himself as an ardent defender of freedom of expression, wants to relax the moderation of content. It opened the door to a return for Donald Trump, who was ousted from Twitter shortly after supporting his supporters who took part in the storming of the Capitol in January 2021.

A redemption rather than a lawsuit

Elon Musk finally bought out Twitter on Thursday. The new boss immediately fired boss Parag Agrawal and two other executives, chief financial officer Ned Segal and chief legal officer Vijaya Gadde, according to unnamed sources from CNBC and the washington post. The eccentric billionaire had until Friday to complete the acquisition of the social network, failing which a trial would have taken place in November.

The operation had been dragging on since the announcement at the end of April of a $44 billion acquisition offer, reluctantly accepted by Twitter. The entrepreneur sought to get out of it unilaterally in early July, accusing the company of having lied to him, but the company’s board of directors took legal action. At the beginning of the month, a few days before the opening of a lawsuit that Twitter seemed on track to win, Elon Musk finally offered to close the transaction at the price initially agreed.

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