The French organization responsible for digital communications, Arcom, said that Twitter had shown a lack of transparency in combating disinformation, as the social media platform faced intense scrutiny in the wake of sharp job cuts.
In a third annual report on “combating information manipulation”, Arcom noted Twitter’s “extremely loose transparency regarding data” on the matter, adding that the company provided “inaccurate” details about how its automated tools worked.
Arcom does not have the authority to sanction online platforms for spreading false information.
But under a French law adopted in 2018, 12 of these platforms must disclose the processes they have put in place to handle their own definition of disinformation, leading to “name and shame” offers by the authority.
The 12 online platforms include Alphabet’s YouTube, the online encyclopedia Wikipedia, Meta’s Facebook, and, for the first time, the fast-growing short-video platform TikTok, owned by Meta. ByteDance, based in China.
French laws also force major online platforms to provide means for their users to report false information that could change the likely outcome of an election. Nor was Twitter worst in its class, according to the Arcom report.
The authority said that “TikTok and Yahoo, and to a lesser extent Google, are considered the worst overall by not having concrete information that would allow Arcom” to analyze the effectiveness of measures aimed at combating information manipulation.
The report comes a week after the head of Twitter France announced his resignation.
Earlier this November, after transferring ownership of Twitter to Musk, he laid off half of his workforce, including teams responsible for communications, content curation, human rights, and machine learning ethics, in addition to some production and engineering teams.