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Technology

X tweaks rules to formally allow adult content


The internet has been home to all kinds of content for a long time, so it was no surprise to anyone when people started tweeting porn at each other. X (formerly Twitter) has long had many active NSFW communities, and though the social network unofficially allowed people to post adult content, its rules have never forbidden or allowed such content outright.

That’s changing now. Over the weekend, X added clauses to its rules, formally allowing users to post adult and graphic content on the platform — with a few caveats. Users can now post consensually-produced NSFW content as long as it is prominently labeled as such. The new rules also cover AI-generated videos and images.

The tweak to the rules is not a complete surprise, since X, under Elon Musk, has already experimented with formally hosting adult content with NSFW communities.

“We believe that users should be able to create, distribute, and consume material related to sexual themes as long as it is consensually produced and distributed. Sexual expression, visual or written, can be a legitimate form of artistic expression,” X’s page on ‘adult content’ policies reads.

“We believe in the autonomy of adults to engage with and create content that reflects their own beliefs, desires, and experiences, including those related to sexuality. We balance this freedom by restricting exposure to Adult Content for children or adult users who choose not to see it,” the page reads.

X’s violent content rules also have similar guidelines, but X maintains that the content should not be “excessively gory or depicting sexual violence.” The platform continues to disallow content that explicitly threatens or incites/glorifies violence.

The company’s reasoning for allowing graphic content is to let people participate in conversations about what is happening around them, and include images and videos.

The social network allows users to mark their posts as containing sensitive media, and doesn’t allow users under 18 or those who haven’t entered their birth dates on their profile to see such posts.

X has never really banned porn, but these clauses could let it build services around adult content — think creating an OnlyFans competitor to bolster its revenues.

About 13% of posts on the platform in 2022 contained adult content, according to a Reuters report in 2022 that cited internal company documents. Adult content on X has seemingly gone up since then, especially as porn bots have proliferated on the platform.

Now that the social network is formally allowing adult content, regulators will no doubt be keeping a keen eye on X and its efforts to weed out non-consensual porn and child sexual abuse material (CSAM).

Last October, Australia fined X for failing to provide information about child abuse content, and around the same time, India notified multiple social networks, including X, to remove CSAM from their platforms.





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