Twitter has announced a new policy to combat disinformation in times of crisis, specifically, in armed conflicts such as the one in Russia and Ukraine, for which will limit the visibility of tweets that violate the regulations and will enhance the rest, among other measures.
Disinformation has the ability to harm vulnerable populations, especially in crisis situations, such as a health emergency, a natural disaster or an armed conflict, according to the social network in a statement. For this reason, Twitter has launched its new policy that, for the moment, will only be applied in cases of international armed conflicts, starting with Ukraine.
This new policy will determine whether or not content is misleading by drawing on multiple sources.”credible and public available, such as monitoring groups, humanitarian organizations, open source researchers and journalists, among others.
Twitter establishes three measures that it will carry out against platform users who violate this policy. One of them is to limit the visibility of this type of content. To do this, they will stop recommending them in certain parts of the social network (such as in the first results of the search engine) and will show the responses of the offending account in a lower position within a conversation.
At the same time, the social network will promote publications that do comply with the regulations or belong to “high profile” accounts, such as verified ones, those of media affiliated with a State or governmental and official ones.
Another of these measures is to include a notice in the tweets that warns of non-compliance with the policy implemented by the social network. The user can access its content by clicking on the alert. Additionally, retweeting, liking, and otherwise interacting with such post will be disabled.
WHAT POSTS VIOLATE THE NEW TWITTER POLICY
Twitter states that, on the one hand, it will take action against tweets that contribute to false coverage of an event by providing information that distorts conditions on the ground as the conflict progresses.
On the other hand, the social network will also act against false allegations regarding the use of force, incursions into a territory that is under the sovereignty of another State, and the use of weapons.
The platform will also take action against tweets that contain false or misleading allegations of war crimes against specific populations. Finally, it will act against publications that spread false information regarding the international community and its responses, sanctions, defensive actions and humanitarian operations.
THE EXCEPTIONS TO THIS NEW REGULATION
Twitter explains in its Help section that it leaves out of this new policy, on the one hand, opinions and comments satirical, as long as they do not contain false or misleading statements. The social network also exempts tweets that seek information about an armed conflict, unless a pattern of “insane behavior” is shown in them.
The platform will also allow publications that discredit or try to verify the facts and, in order to fulfill their didactic task, have to reproduce false or misleading content.
Tweets from the media are also exempt from this new policy, as they are considered descriptions of news events based on facts, despite the fact that they may include some misleading information.
Twitter finally contemplates the exemption of anecdotes narrated in the first person from personal accounts, since they are for all purposes “unverifiable”.