Twitter is going to crack down on midterm election misinformation

Twitter is going to crack down on midterm election misinformation

Twitter has unveiled its plan to tackle misinformation in the run-up to the US midterm elections — and already people are crying foul.

The company said it is ‘activating’ its civil integrity policy, which covers misleading information on matters such as voting, content intended to intimidate or discourage people from participating in elections and misleading claims intended to undermine public confidence in an election.

Such posts may be labeled, and may not be recommended or amplified. It appears to have been a successful strategy in the past, with a test by the label last year showing a 13 percent drop in misinformation replies, a 15 percent drop in retweets and a 10 percent drop in likes.

Other measures include the introduction of state-specific event hubs that contain real-time election information from state election officials, and local news outlets and journalists. Twitter said it will add an additional, nationally focused events page, which will be available to everyone in the US.

Also new is a dedicated Explore tab that will include respected local news, state local news and resources, and voter education public service announcements in both English and Spanish.

Candidates will continue to use the account labels introduced in May, and Twitter says public officials, office candidates and journalists have additional help keeping their accounts secure.

More controversially, though, Twitter is reintroducing a feature first used in 2020.

“We’re also bringing back prebunks — in English, Spanish and all other languages ​​supported on Twitter — to steer clear of misleading narratives on Twitter and proactively address issues that may be misinformation,” the company explained in a statement. Blog post.

“In the coming months, we’ll be placing prompts directly on people’s timelines when people type in related terms, phrases or hashtags in the US and in search.”

But the company is already getting pushback. Rival social media site Gettr – founded by former Trump adviser Jason Miller, and a favorite of the US right – issued a statement criticizing the move.

“These disturbing new policies are a huge blow to democracy and free speech rights, not just in America, but around the world,” Miller said.

“We must not be numb to this kind of ideologically-motivated censorship that is a bare-bones attempt by Twitter’s liberal executives to control election results and the democratic process.”

Meanwhile, Twitter users themselves, as well as other platforms, are demanding selective interference and even threatening class action lawsuits. Twitter’s move to curb misinformation looks set to spawn more conspiracy theories than ever.

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