YouTube gets reminder to follow EU law over Hamas content

Thierry Breton reminded Sundar Pichai of the EU's content-moderation law.

YouTube gets reminder to follow EU law over Hamas content

Google’s Sundar Pichai is the latest tech chief to receive a letter from Brussels urging him to be “very vigilant” to ensure Hamas-connected disinformation and illegal content doesn’t spread on YouTube.

Thierry Breton, the European Union’s internal market commissioner, today reminded Pichai of the EU’s content-moderation law, the Digital Services Act (DSA), including rules to quickly take down illegal content — like incitement to violence or propaganda for terrorist organizations — flagged by users and law enforcement authorities.

Meta and TikTok CEOs Mark Zuckerberg Shou Zi Chew, respectively, as well as Elon Musk, owner of X (formerly Twitter), were warned and given deadlines to respond to the European Commission in public letters in the past news days.

Since the end of August, over a dozen large online platforms have had to comply with rules to better handle illegal and harmful content under the DSA. Non-compliance can lead to fines of up to 6 percent of companies’ annual global revenue.

YouTube said it was reviewing the letter and that teams had removed thousands of harmful videos: “Our teams are working around the clock to monitor for harmful footage and remain vigilant to take action quickly if needed on videos, shorts and livestreams.”