Twitter launches civic integrity plan ahead of midterms

Tech

FILE – The Twitter splash page is displayed on a digital device in San Diego, April 25, 2022. Twitter has filed a response to claims by billionaire Elon Musk that he has legitimate reasons for wanting to back out of his $44 billion deal to buy the social media company. In a counterclaim filed Thursday, Aug. 4, 2022, Twitter calls Musk’s reasoning “a story, imagined in an effort to escape a merger agreement that Musk no longer found attractive once the stock market—and along with it, his massive personal wealth—declined in value.” (AP Photo/Gregory Bull, File)

(NewsNation) — Twitter on Thursday said it was rolling out plans to combat misinformation on the platform ahead of the 2022 midterm elections.

Those plans include enforcing its civic integrity policy, which prohibits content that contains false or misleading information about the election or content that may suppress voting, preventing misleading tweets from being recommended to users, and protections for candidate and journalist accounts, Twitter said.

“Twitter is the place to find real-time, reliable information about the 2022 midterms  – whether you’re looking for breaking news from reporters, information on voting or policy positions from candidates,” the company said in a statement. 

“We aim to enable healthy civic conversation on Twitter, while ensuring people have the context they need to make informed decisions about content they encounter,” Twitter wrote.

The platform has previously withstood criticism for misinformation spread on its platform surrounding elections and the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Twitter repeatedly labeled some of then-President Donald Trump’s tweets as misleading in the lead up to and after the 2020 presidential election, and the company permanently suspended him from the platform following the Jan. 6, 2021 attack on the Capitol.

The platform on Thursday said it has tested new misleading information labels that increased clickthrough rates by 17 percent and decreased engagement, measured through metrics like the number of replies, retweets and likes.

Twitter said it prohibits accounts that misrepresent affiliation to a candidate or elected officials and the company was taking further action to protect accounts representing government officials, candidates and journalists.

Those new steps include “more sophisticated” alerts for suspicious activity, increased login defenses and expedited account recovery.

“Accounts will be reminded to use a strong password, encouraged to enable two-factor authentication and asked to check the third-party apps they’ve connected to their accounts,” Twitter said. “We will also enable password reset protection for accounts by default to help prevent unauthorized password changes.”

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