Elon Musk Said That Going After Child Sex Abuse Material On Twitter Was “Priority #1″…. NBC News Says Otherwise

Last year, Elon Musk said this:

However, NBC News has looked at this and has come to the conclusion that Elon isn’t keeping his word:

The tweets reviewed by NBC News offer to sell or trade content that is commonly known as child pornography or child sexual abuse material (CSAM). The tweets do not show CSAM, and NBC News did not view any CSAM in the course of reporting this article.

Some tweets and accounts have been up for months and predate Musk’s takeover. They remained live on the platform as of Friday morning. 

Many more tweets reviewed by NBC News over a period of weeks were published during Musk’s tenure. Some users tweeting CSAM offers appeared to delete the tweets shortly after posting them, seemingly to avoid detection, and later posted similar offers from the same accounts. Some accounts offering CSAM said that their older accounts had been shut down by Twitter, but that they were able to create new ones.

According to Twitter’s rules published in October 2020, “Twitter has zero tolerance towards any material that features or promotes child sexual exploitation, one of the most serious violations of the Twitter Rules. This may include media, text, illustrated, or computer-generated images.”

Well, that’s not a good look for Elon and Twitter. But here is what Twitter had to say:

In an email to NBC News after this article was published, Ella Irwin, Twitter’s vice president of product overseeing trust and safety, said “We definitely know we still have work to do in the space, and certainly believe we have been improving rapidly and detecting far more than Twitter has detected in a long time but we are deploying a number of things to continue to improve.” Irwin asked that NBC News provide the findings of its investigation to the company so that it could “follow up and get the content down.”

But the real question is this. If this is “priority #1” for Twitter, you’d expect that the general public would see more from Twitter other than talk. But it appears that this isn’t the case. And this doesn’t help the situation:

It’s unclear just how many people remain at Twitter to address CSAM after Musk enacted several rounds of layoffs and issued an ultimatum that led to a wave of resignations. Musk has engaged some outside help, and the company said in December that its suspension of accounts for child sexual exploitation had risen sharply. A representative for the U.S. child exploitation watchdog the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children said that the number of reports of CSAM detected and flagged by the company remains unchanged since Musk’s takeover. 

Twitter also disbanded the company’s Trust and Safety council, which included nonprofits focused on addressing CSAM. 

And there’s news this morning that Elon has sent a number of people from their Global Content Moderation Team packing. So given all of that, how precisely is Elon and Twitter going to address this issue? Given the fact that Elon is not focused on anything on the moment, and he clearly doesn’t care about putting in the resources to address this issue, I cannot see this situation changing. I also expect Elon and Twitter to get slapped by some government agency or enforcement organization at some point over this because this is the sort of thing that they don’t tolerate. Which will not end well for Elon or for Twitter.

One Response to “Elon Musk Said That Going After Child Sex Abuse Material On Twitter Was “Priority #1″…. NBC News Says Otherwise”

  1. […] week, Twitter was found by NBC News to be doing absolutely nothing when it came to child sexual abuse martial (CSAM) on the […]

Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: