Twitter to label misleading information related to Covid-19

Hemani Sheth Mumbai | Updated on May 12, 2020 Published on May 12, 2020

File photo   -  Reuters

Twitter on Monday introduced new labels for tweets that contain harmful and misleading information related to the Covid-19 pandemic.

The micro-blogging platform has introduced the labels in a bid to limit the spread of potentially harmful and misleading content on the platform.

“Starting today, we’re introducing new labels and warning messages that will provide additional context and information on some Tweets containing disputed or misleading information related to Covid-19,” Twitter said in an official blog post detailing the feature.

Twitter in March had broadened its policies to address harmful content related to the pandemic on its platform.

According to the new guidelines introduced in march, the platform will remove tweets that contain a denial of global or local health authority recommendations, description of alleged cures for. Covid-19 or harmful, false treatments. It will also remove specific and unverified claims that incite people to action and cause widespread panic, social unrest or large-scale disorder as well as claims made by people impersonating a government or health official or organization apart from claims that specific groups, nationalities are or are not susceptible to Covid-19.

“We may use these labels and warning messages to provide additional explanations or clarifications in situations where the risks of harm associated with a Tweet are less severe but where people may still be confused or misled by the content,” Twitter said.

The labels are similar to those introduced for manipulated and synthetic media by the social media platform earlier this year.

In order to label the tweets, the platform will divide them into three broad categories based on the propensity for harm and type of misleading information. The ‘Misleading information’ category will have “statements or assertions that have been confirmed to be false or misleading by subject-matter experts, such as public health authorities.”

“Statements or assertions in which the accuracy, truthfulness, or credibility of the claim is contested or unknown” will be included in the ‘Disputed claims’ category while the ‘Unverified claims’ category will contain “information (which could be true or false) that is unconfirmed at the time it is shared.”

These labels will link to a Twitter-curated page or an external website of a “trusted source” that contains relevant information on the claims made within the Tweet.

“Our teams are using and improving on internal systems to pro- actively monitor content related to Covid-19,” it said.

Published on May 12, 2020

A letter from the Editor

Dear Readers,

The coronavirus crisis has changed the world completely in the last few months. All of us have been locked into our homes, economic activity has come to a near standstill. Everyone has been impacted.

Including your favourite business and financial newspaper. Our printing and distribution chains have been severely disrupted across the country, leaving readers without access to newspapers. Newspaper delivery agents have also been unable to service their customers because of multiple restrictions.

In these difficult times, we, at BusinessLine have been working continuously every day so that you are informed about all the developments – whether on the pandemic, on policy responses, or the impact on the world of business and finance. Our team has been working round the clock to keep track of developments so that you – the reader – gets accurate information and actionable insights so that you can protect your jobs, businesses, finances and investments.

We are trying our best to ensure the newspaper reaches your hands every day. We have also ensured that even if your paper is not delivered, you can access BusinessLine in the e-paper format – just as it appears in print. Our website and apps too, are updated every minute, so that you can access the information you want anywhere, anytime.

But all this comes at a heavy cost. As you are aware, the lockdowns have wiped out almost all our entire revenue stream. Sustaining our quality journalism has become extremely challenging. That we have managed so far is thanks to your support. I thank all our subscribers – print and digital – for your support.

I appeal to all or readers to help us navigate these challenging times and help sustain one of the truly independent and credible voices in the world of Indian journalism. Doing so is easy. You can help us enormously simply by subscribing to our digital or e-paper editions. We offer several affordable subscription plans for our website, which includes Portfolio, our investment advisory section that offers rich investment advice from our highly qualified, in-house Research Bureau, the only such team in the Indian newspaper industry.

A little help from you can make a huge difference to the cause of quality journalism!

Support Quality Journalism
This article is closed for comments.
Please Email the Editor
You have read 1 out of 3 free articles for this week. For full access, please subscribe and get unlimited access to all sections.