New can spread like wildfire now more so than ever thanks to social media websites such as Twitter. These platforms allow people to get information about trending topics quickly. They simply need to log in, and most likely, the first thing they would find on the top of their feed is about the latest happenings. That’s why brands, activists, and politicians alike use Twitter to make announcements and disseminate relevant information. It is a great place to raise awareness.
Unfortunately, people can also exploit the reach they can get from Twitter for malicious intentions. For example, they can use social media networks to spread false or misleading information. Since people use Twitter to learn about the news, only a few would do actual research after reading a Tweet. The rest will Retweet it immediately, which will fan the flames.
Be Proactive or Face Legal Trouble
The spread of fake news is a common problem for social media platforms. It can put their users in danger, and t the same time, places the company under scrutiny. They constantly clash with the government, saying they are doing nothing or not doing enough to tackle misinformation.
Earlier this year, Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Google and Alphabet’s respective executives faced lawmakers in a hearing regarding misinformation. The lawmakers questioned their role in the spread of misinformation about climate change and the coronavirus.
That was months ago, and their battle is still going on. Now, the pressure to remove false content from the platform has been renewed. As countries roll out COVID-19 vaccines, fake news made by anti-vaccine people spread faster than the virus itself.
Twitter-Reuters and Twitter-Associated Press Collaborations
To effectively combat misinformation, Twitter is now partnering with two international news agencies. Namely, Reuters and Associated Press are the ones that will collaborate with Twitter. This is not the first time we have seen these two partners with social media networks. They both work with Facebook on fact checks. Likewise, according to a Twitter spokesperson, it is not the first time they are collaborating with news organizations.
Twitter will be working with the two separately. That’s not unexpected since they are rival agencies, after all. But, they still have a common goal. That’s what matters.
With these collaborations, Twitter will be able to “expand its efforts to identify and elevate credible information on the platform.” They allow Twitter to enable its users to find reliable information quickly. However, keep in mind that they will focus initially on English-language content.
Tom Januszewski – the vice president of global business development of AP – said that their company had worked closely with Twitter before. It is in their efforts to expand the reach of factual journalism. He adds that they are excited about leveraging AP’s scale and speed to add context to online conversations. That can benefit from easy access to the facts, he said.
This collaboration is vital to Reuters. According to Reuter’s head of user-generated content newsgathering, Hazel Baker, their company values trust, accuracy, and impartiality. They are at the “heart of what Reuters does every day.” These things “drive” the company’s “commitment to stopping the spread of misinformation.”
Twitter’s Trust & Safety teams’ work will be independent of this one. This partnership will not affect their work of determining whether Tweets violate Twitter rules or not. They will label tweets containing manipulated media, misinformation, and sensitive media that violate the platforms’ rules as they usually do.
Twitter’s Current Way Of Surfacing Credible Information And Context
Twitter monitors the trending topics on the platforms. The company’s Curation team steps up when the conversations are about topics that may be noteworthy, sensitive, or controversial. This is to stop the potential spread of misleading information before it gets out of hand. The team helps give people context to make informed decisions by sourcing and elevating relevant context from reliable sources.
Twitter puts these added context and relevant information all over the platform.
The top trends reveal what topics interest the people on Twitter at that time and day. Twitter explains these top trends via a written description, a Tweet, or a Moment.
When one finds an interesting topic on Twitter, that person is likely to use Twitter’s search function to be more up to speed. Twitter prevents them from obtaining misleading information by setting certain keywords to show hand-picked content at the top of the results. This content came from trusted resources or Moments.
- Explore Tab
A user can find content created just for himself on the Explore Tab. It is where Twitter shows people what’s happening right now. The company includes Moments created by Twitter and third parties like news organizations and Trends in the Explore tab. It ensures that users will first see reliable information before stumbling upon fake news.
Furthermore, Twitter shows prompt on the Explore tab or Home Timelines when needed. These prompts link to a public service announcement (PSA) Moment. There, they will find trustworthy information.
In some cases, Tweets that violate Twitter’s misinformation rules may remain visible on the platform. When that happens, Twitter adds a label to the said Tweet. The label links to a Moment with informative context on the topic or to the Twitter Rules.
How Can The New Program Help Expand These Efforts
The partnership with the two news organizations will increase Twitter’s Curation team’s capacity to add reliable context to conversations happening on Twitter.
This program will:
- Increase And Improve Content Sharing
This ensures that “information is available in real-time around key conversations as they emerge on Twitter.” It is especially beneficial when Twitter’s Curation team “doesn’t have the specific expertise” or “access to a high enough volume of reputable reporting.” To illustrate, users will see links to reporting from trusted sources more frequently thanks to this program.
- Allow The Curation Team to Anticipate and Proactively Identify Emerging Conversations
Twitter will be able to predict what will be the popular subject of conversation rather than wait for something to go viral. This will allow the network to feed users information from reliable sources before fake news arrives. As they say, prevention is better than cure.
Twitter says this is just one part of its ongoing efforts to help people understand the conversation happening on its service. “We’re committed to continuing our work to elevate credible information and context,” the statement continued.
How Can Twitter Followers Help Twitter Stop Disinformation?
Smokey the Bear once said “only you can stop forest fires” and this applies to Twitter as well. Every day, well-meaning Twitter Followers like you crawl the website and application looking for disinformation and promptly report it to the authorities. Did you know if you see this kind of content on the site, you too can help stop misinformation? If you find something you suspect is misinformation, you can simply click the options box for the selected tweet, and follow the instructions therein for the option to report it to Twitter. Once you submit a report to Twitter, they will let you know they got your report. Consider this a big “Thank You” from Twitter, because that’s exactly what it is.
Next, their teams of adept Fact Checkers will begin to review the content and context of the tweet you submitted. They use an exhaustive and thoroughly knowledgeable team to research the information and determine if it’s true or not. If it’s not true, they have the power, authority, and irresponsibility to delete it from the app. This is the most honorable duty for Twitter to handle, as we can already see the world quickly falling apart due to bad actors across the internet.
How to Thank Twitter Followers For Helping Win The Good Fight?
If you find someone who boasts about getting misleading tweets removed from the platform, you should thank them as well. You could even follow them on Twitter if you have an account. The best way to thank them is to read out the Top 10 List of the best sites to buy real Twitter Followers from and anonymously buy them a few thousand for the generosity of their time!
It’s not Twitter’s fault for being a part of the internet. They shouldn’t have to even deal with this garbage, but to help improve the world and make it a better place for the next generation, they have to do something. The reasonable and fair rules they have set up will help ensure exactly this is what happens, and we don’t need to look far to see what happens if they don’t.