Twitter Tests ‘Misleading Tweet’ Reporting Option

Twitter is rolling out a limited test of a new reporting system, in an effort to clamp down on misleading information on the platform.

Twitter said the new reporting system will be available for some people in the US, South Korea, and Australia, who will find the option to flag a Tweet as “It’s misleading” after clicking on Report Tweet.

In January this year, Twitter piloted a program called Birdwatch, only available to Twitter users who register for the scheme in the United States. It is essentially the Twitter equivalent of Wikipedia editors.

Misleading information

Birdwatch allows users to flag tweets that they believe are misleading, and also write notes to provide context about the offending item.

Twitter has been taken action against individuals peddling hate and misleading information in the past couple of years, including the permanent suspension of former President Donald Trump from the platform.

Twitter more recently suspended the account of Trump supporter and Republican Congresswoman Marjorie Taylor Greene, after she tweeted that Covid-19 vaccines were failing.

This was her second suspension in the space of a month.

President Joe Biden meanwhile has been very clear about the need for social networking giants to clamp down on misinformation on their platforms, which is causing real problems during the Covid-19 pandemic, with a significant percentage of Americas refusing to get the Coronavirus vaccine, despite surging infections and deaths from the Delta variant.

Indeed, President Biden said last month that Facebook was ‘killing people’ because of misleading Coronavirus information on the platform.

He later backtracked when he said that he had meant to accuse a dozen Facebook users, but not the social media platform itself, of spreading deadly lies about Covid vaccines.

Easy reporting

Into this febrile atmosphere comes Twitter, after it announced on Tuesday the introduction of an easy reporting system for misleading content.

We’re testing a feature for you to report Tweets that seem misleading – as you see them,” Twitter Support tweeted. “Starting today, some people in the US, South Korea, and Australia will find the option to flag a Tweet as ‘It’s misleading’ after clicking on Report Tweet.”

“We’re assessing if this is an effective approach so we’re starting small,” it added. “We may not take action on and cannot respond to each report in the experiment, but your input will help us identify trends so that we can improve the speed and scale of our broader misinformation work.”

Twitter last year began adding labels and warnings about misinformation on the site, including about the Coronavirus pandemic and the US election in November 2020.

It also began for the first time, applying fact checking labels to tweets by former US President Trump (before his ban), much to his outrage.

Tom Jowitt

Tom Jowitt is a leading British tech freelancer and long standing contributor to Silicon UK. He is also a bit of a Lord of the Rings nut...

Recent Posts

Dorsey: Square May Develop Bitcoin Mining Hardware

Square chief executive Jack Dorsey says fintech company looking into custom-built Bitcoin mining hardware that…

7 hours ago

Twitch Warns Over Source Code Breach

Gameplay streaming service Twitch says massive breach earlier this month mainly affected confidential source code,…

8 hours ago

US, Kazakhstan Take Bitcoin Mining Lead From China

China's share of Bitcoin mining drops to zero amidst crackdown, as US, Kazakhstan and Russia…

8 hours ago

Facebook Developing ‘Egocentric’ Artificial Intelligence

Facebook wants to make wearable tech more useful with artificial intelligence trained on massive set…

9 hours ago

Sunderland University Seeks To Recover From ‘Extensive’ Cyber-Attack

IT and email systems at Sunderland University offline since last week following 'major cyber-attack' that…

9 hours ago

Apple Removes Quran App In China

Apple takes down popular Quran app in China after government request, as critics call company…

10 hours ago