X changes rules to formally allow adult content

The Internet has been home to all kinds of content for a long time, so no one was surprised when people started tweeting porn to each other. X (formerly Twitter) has long had many active NSFW communities, and although the social network unofficially allows people to post adult content, its rules have never prohibited or permitted such content.

This is 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 clearly labeled as such. The new rules also cover AI-generated videos and images.

The rule change isn’t a complete surprise, since X, under the leadership of 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 produced and distributed consensually. Sexual expression, whether visual or written, can be a legitimate form of artistic expression,” reads X’s page on “adult content” policies.

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

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

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

The social network allows users to mark their messages containing sensitive mediaand does not allow users under the age of 18 or those who have not entered their date of birth on their profile to view these posts.

X has never really prohibited pornography, but these clauses could allow it to create services around adult content – remember to create an Onlyfans competitor to increase its income.

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

Now that the social network is officially allowing adult content, regulators will no doubt keep a close eye on X and its efforts to weed out non-consensual pornographic material and child sexual abuse (CSAM).

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


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