Elon Musk’s X updates policies to formally allow adult content

Social media platform says sexualised content can be ‘legitimate form of artistic expression.’

musk x
X has updated its policies on adult content [Rick Rycroft/AP]

Elon Musk’s social media platform X has updated its policies to formally allow adult content.

Under the updated guidelines, the platform formerly known as Twitter will allow users to share sexualised content so long as it is consensual and clearly labelled.

The revised policy, which was updated over the weekend, states 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, whether visual or written, can be a legitimate form of artistic expression,” it says.

“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.”

Exposure to graphic material will be restricted for children and adult users who choose not to see it, and users will not be allowed to share content “promoting exploitation, nonconsent, objectification, sexualization or harm to minors, and obscene behaviours”, according to the policy.

The change, first reported by TechCrunch, formalises a relatively tolerant attitude towards adult content that pre-dates Musk’s purchase of Twitter in October 2022.

Unlike platforms such as Instagram, Facebook, TikTok and YouTube, Twitter has never expressly banned nudity and sexualised content.

Under Musk’s tenure, X has dramatically scaled back moderation on the platform and reinstated previously banned accounts, including those of former United States President Donald Trump and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones.

Musk has argued that he is upholding freedom of speech, but critics have accused the Tesla CEO of encouraging hate speech and misinformation.

Source: Al Jazeera and news agencies