The European Commission’s Vice-President for Values and Transparency Věra Jourová, predicted that “hate speech” laws will soon be implemented in the United States.
“Illegal hate speech, which you will have soon also in the U.S. I think that we have a strong reason why we have this in the criminal law,” Jourová said.
Jourová also warned Twitter CEO Elon Musk, “the time of the Wild West is over,”
Jourová told EuroNews at the WEF event that the platform would face sanctions if it didn’t comply with new E.U. online regulations.
When asked if the bloc had enough power to impose such restrictions on social media platforms, she said there was “nothing stronger than legislation in force.”
“We will have the Digital Services Act [DSA]. We will have the Code of Practice as a part of this legislation,” Jourová said.
“So, after Mr. Musk took over Twitter with his ‘freedom of speech absolutism,’ we are the protectors of freedom of speech as well.”
The Czech politician’s earlier comments came during a panel hosted by former CNN host Brian Stelter on “The Clear and Present Danger of Disinformation.”
Shelter hosting a panel on disinformation is ironic, given his own relationship with the truth.
The panel also featured New York Times chairman Arthur Gregg Sulzberger, Democratic Congressman Seth Moulton, and Internews CEO Jeanne Bourgault.
Moulton appeared to agree with the E.U. Commission V.P.’s statement, telling her, “I think in general the U.S. has a lot to learn in terms of data regulation, internet regulation… You’re way ahead of us in that regard.”
But the Democrat politician later backstepped, saying he didn’t believe that American politicians were ready to give up fundamental aspects of freedom of speech.
The Digital Services Act (DSA), which came into force in November 2022, expanded Brussel’s ability to police so-called ‘hate speech’ and ‘disinformation’ via punishment mechanisms against internet platforms that violate the bloc’s rules.