Twitter is testing a new feature that allows users to report potentially misleading content: a scourge that has exploded during the pandemic.
“We are testing a feature that allows you to report tweets that seem misleading the moment you see them,” the social network said in a statement on its channels. This is initially a relatively limited test. However, a handful of users in the US, South Korea and Australia can now select the ‘this is misleading’ option after clicking ‘report tweet’. They will then be able to choose between different categories: ‘health’, ‘politics’ and ‘other’.
“We won’t or will not be able to respond to every report during this testing phase, but your contributions will help us identify trends to improve the speed and scope of our work on fake news,” the San Francisco-based company said the company.
Twitter, like Facebook and YouTube, is regularly criticized for not doing enough to combat misinformation. But the platform doesn’t have the same resources as its Silicon Valley neighbours, so it’s exploring techniques that are cheaper than recruiting armies of moderators. Over the years, and especially during the US election campaign and the pandemic, the social network has tightened its rules.
For example, users can be banned after five warnings for incorrect or misleading information about vaccines since March. A system previously led to Twitter kicking former US President Donald Trump off the network for repeated violations such as inciting violence.