In an effort to curb misinformation during the 2020 presidential election, Twitter is implementing a slew of new features aimed at policing false info.
As the presidential race for 2020 nears a boiling point, correct and accurate information is arguably more crucial than ever. Twitter hasn’t always been on the right side of that argument when it comes to policing the more vitriolic voices of its platform, but it’s promising to enact various policies and systems that will hopefully aid in proper information up to and during the results of the election.
Twitter announced its new initiative regarding election policies and system updates in a lengthy post on the official Twitter blog on October 9, 2020. The blog lays stresses the importance of accurate information during this upcoming election, as well as what Twitter intends to do about it. It ranges from dismissing or de-recommending premature and unconfirmed results to labeling misinformative tweets with Disputed labels and directing users to correct information. Both tweets sharing misinformation and tweets that encourage electoral interference will fall under scrutiny in these new policies. The latter tweets will be outright removed if found in violation of Twitter’s initiative to keep information accurate and curb any kind of interference.
Twitter’s new policies and systems will limit views to the posting of disinformation about the 2020 election.
Twitter’s efforts to regulate this topic will likely be a difficult field to police, giving the number of bots and bad actors constantly circulating and repeating various bits of bad info. Moreover, Twitter could find itself under further scrutiny from government officials who have already taken issue with Twitter moderation in the past. Twitter is, after all, one of three companies (the others being Facebook and Google) who were subpoenaed to appear before Senate over liability laws protecting platforms from responsibility for moderation and the content posted by their users.
Regardless, it’s hard to argue that Twitter’s effort to maintain a more accurate and less toxic space leading up to the 2020 election isn’t warranted. Whether it will come out without any kind of backlash or consequence is another story.