Arts & Entertainment

X takes Australian watchdog to court over pedophilic content issue

Sydney, Australia, Nov 16 (EFE).- Australia’s online safety watchdog said on Thursday that the social media platform X, formerly Twitter, has filed a lawsuit against the regulatory body after it fined the platform for failing to outline its efforts to combat child sexual abuse content.

Last month, the Electronic Safety Commission levied a fine of AU$610,500 ($395,543) against X for failing to address a set of questions regarding its approach to handling child abuse content on its platform.

“X has filed an appeal seeking a judicial review of the decisions of the Electronic Safety Commissioner in this matter,” a spokesperson for the watchdog told EFE regarding the lawsuit filed by X in a Federal Court of the country.

The spokesperson said the eSafety was exploring various options regarding X’s “non-compliance” with the watchdog’s requested actions, but refused to give further details due to the ongoing “legal proceedings.”

The fine, which X had the option to appeal within 28 days, was imposed under Australia’s Online Safety Act passed in 2021.

The law requires technology companies to report to authorities on the measures they take to combat the proliferation of child sexual exploitation content.

Last month, the regulatory body underlined that X failed to provide satisfactory answers to questions related to the platform’s response time to reports of child sexual exploitation, and other related matters in the company.

“Twitter/X has stated publicly that tackling child sexual exploitation is the number 1 priority for the company, but it can’t just be empty talk, we need to see words backed up with tangible action,” said eSafety Commissioner Julie Inman Grant.

The watchdog insists that the proliferation of online child sexual exploitation is a growing problem in Australia, and technology companies bear a moral responsibility to protect children from sexual exploitation and abuse on their platforms.

In February, the eSafety Commission issued legal notices to several technology companies, urging them to clarify the steps they were taking to address child sexual extortion, exploitation, and harmful content on their platforms. EFE


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