Twitter Is Testing New Features to Fight Misinformation

The platform is exploring new ways to call out "harmfully misleading" content

twitter new features
Twitter wants to help flag misleading tweets from politicians and public figures
Jakub Porzycki/NurPhoto via Getty Images
By Kayla Kibbe / February 21, 2020 10:17 am

Twitter continues to establish itself as the anti-Facebook by actually doing something to try to stop the rampant spread of misinformation on social media.

Most recently, Twitter has begun testing new features to help flag tweets containing information deemed “harmfully misleading.” A leaked demo reveals a feature that will add brightly colored labels directly beneath such tweets from politicians and other public figures, NBC News reported. Misinformation will reportedly be corrected beneath the tweet by fact-checkers and journalists who will function as part of what Twitter calls a “community reports” feature.

The new feature is reportedly one of many Twitter is currently considering rolling out in the future, though no specific timeline for any anticipated releases has been identified. “We’re exploring a number of ways to address misinformation and provide more context for tweets on Twitter,” a spokesperson said. “Misinformation is a critical issue and we will be testing many different ways to address it.”

Twitter has recently instituted other measures to combat misinformation, including a new policy banning tweets that contain deepfakes and/or “deceptively share synthetic or manipulated media that are likely to cause harm” introduced last month.

These efforts distinguish Twitter from other social media platforms like Facebook, which has has doubled down on many of its most controversial policies in recent months, defending its stance on political advertising and announcing that hate speech from politicians will be permitted on the platform on the grounds that it is inherently “newsworthy” if it comes from a political figure.

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