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Tech giants forced to hand over anti-abuse processes



Australia’s e-Safety Commissioner is demanding tech giants hand over their anti-abuse processes, in a bid to tackle dangerous material

Australia’s e-Safety Commissioner has demanded major digital tech platforms Meta, Apple, and Microsoft share their processes, to eradicate the sharing of child abuse material on their platforms.

The warning comes amid growing concerns of abusive and potentially dangerous material online. If the tech giants fail to hand over the details, they will face hefty fines for non-compliance.

Meta, Apple and Microsoft have been reminded that they each face a fine of $555,000AUD per day for not complying with this directive.

The initial laws took effect in January  requiring the technology giants to provide specific details to the Australian government on their practices.

The new law gave the corporations 28 days to comply, but these requirements were largely ignored by Meta, Apple and Microsoft.

Now, the tech giants have withheld the information from the e-Safety Commissioner for nearly seven months.

Yet, it remains to be seen how the Australian government will follow through to force tech giants to provide their anti-child abuse processes from their platforms.

This matter raises a number of ongoing issues relating to control and compliance by mainstream digital and social media platforms.

The Australian government has introduced laws surrounding cyber bullying, violent material and the use of news on social media platforms, yet the laws have not been effective in creating significant change in the content and practices appearing online.

With billions of people using social media every day, the silence from tech giants such as Meta, Facebook and Microsoft may be because they do not have an effective process.

These organisations do not have human or technological resources to moderate the sheer volume of user content being posted.

At least 4.75 billion posts are uploaded by users every day, with many taking it upon themselves to report harmful content in their feeds.

The next few months will be crucial for the Australian Government’s e-Safety Commissioner in how this law will be enforced with the main aim of stamping out child abuse material online.

Report by Dr Karen Sutherland, University of the Sunshine Coast and Dharana Digital

Dr Karen Sutherland is a Senior Lecturer at the University of the Sunshine Coast where she designs and delivers social media education and research. Dr Sutherland is also the Co-Founder and Social Media Specialist at Dharana Digital marketing agency focused on helping people working in the health and wellness space.

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TikTok could be banned in the United States



TikTok in the firing line after Chinese balloon was shot down

China has hit back at the U.S. after officials shot down a suspected Chinese spy balloon off the coast of South Carolina.

Washington says it was being used to monitor strategic sites.

But Beijing rejects this – claiming the balloon was a civilian airship used to monitor the weather.

The incident is just the latest in a long line of diplomatic disputes between the two countries.

Now, TikTok could be banned in the U.S. in the wake of the incident.

Republicans are now pushing for Washington to distance itself from the Beijing-based app. #trending #featured

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Companies to pay extra for verified Twitter accounts



Elon Musk has announced that companies and brands will have to pay $1,000 per month – plus an additional $50 per sub-account – to get verified check-marks on Twitter

The new pricing falls under the new Twitter Blue for Business service.

Within the next few months, only paying Twitter customers will have verified status.

Twitter has stacked on $12.5 billion in debt, and this move hopes to increase subscription revenue to meet Musk’s obligations.

Advertisers halted spending on Twitter after the takeover, but Twitter has since announced partnerships with two brand-safety vendors to win back marketers.

Musk also announced that Twitter would start sharing ad revenue with creators for “ads that appear in their reply threads”, but didn’t provide further detail.

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BMW to invest €800 million in Mexico



BMW is set to invest €800 million in Mexico, to produce its next generation of high-voltage and fully electric batteries

The carmaker is looking to convert more than half of its sales into all-electric cars by 2030.

Construction will begin next year with production beginning in 2027.

The announcement follows several other major expansions from the automaker in recent months, including a $1.7 billion investment in the United States.

The move will add around 1,000 new jobs to its Mexico operations.

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