Sir Elton John leaves Twitter over misinformation, Musk responds

Sir Elton John has farewelled Twitter, citing a spike in “misinformation” as his reason for leaving the platform.

The renowned musician made the announcement on Saturday morning, which was met with a personal response from Twitter CEO Elon Musk, who appeared sorry to hear of his departure.

“All my life I’ve tried to use music to bring people together. Yet it saddens me to see how misinformation is now being used to divide our world,” he wrote.

“I’ve decided to no longer use Twitter, given their recent change in policy which will allow misinformation to flourish unchecked.”

Musk responded, directly asking the pop star what misinformation was referring to.

“I love your music. Hope you come back,” he wrote.

“Is there any misinformation in particular that you’re concerned about?”

Sir Elton did not respond.

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Though his account is still on the platform, he joins the likes of other celebrities, including Whoopi Goldberg, Gigi Hadid and Jim Carrey, in publicly declaring their exit from the platform.

It follows a series of controversial moves by the tech billionaire who took the reins of the platform in October.

Since buying Twitter for $US44 billion ($A66 billion), Musk advocated a “hardcore” work culture while reinstating previously banned controversial accounts.

In regards to Sir Elton’s concerns of misinformation, Musk has vehemently defended the company’s policy on combating the scourge on the platform.

He has claimed vetting content has improved since his acquisition.

“In reality, Twitter is doing a much better job of combating disinformation,” he said on Saturday.

“Hate speech impressions are actually down by a third for Twitter now vs prior to the acquisition,’ he also claimed recently.

Musk was put on notice by the EU last week, which warned of huge financial penalties or a potential ban of the platform in its market if its content moderation was not up to its standards.

Musk met with Thierry Breton, the EU’s commissioner for internal market, last week to discuss the EU’s Digital Services Act and whether or not Twitter was prepared to meet its requirements.

New rules under the Act, which will be implemented next year, require tech companies to better moderate platforms for material that is seen to promote terrorism, child sexual abuse, hate speech and commercial scams.

Musk, Twitter’s new CEO, was told by Mr Breton that his platform needed to “significantly increase” its policing of material that may not meet the Act’s standards if he wanted Twitter to “pass the grade”.

“I welcome Elon Musk’s statements of intent to get Twitter 2.0 ready for the DSA,” he said. “I am pleased to hear that he has read it carefully and considers it as a sensible approach to implementing on a worldwide basis.

“But let’s also be clear that there is still huge work ahead, as Twitter will have to implement transparent user policies, significantly reinforce content moderation and protect freedom of speech.”

Musk also seems to have satisfied one of the Twitter app’s key facilitators, with Apple CEO Tim Cook reportedly telling him the company was not considering removing Twitter from its App Store.

Originally published as ‘Come back’: Musk reacts to popstar’s dramatic Twitter exit

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