Twitter Draws Criticism Over Potential New ‘Misinformation Warning’ System

Twitter is experimenting with a new system that would flag messages it deems problematic, even if not factually incorrect, sparking concern that the platform is taking content screening too far.

Tech blogger Jane Manchun Wong, who is known for reverse engineering apps to find hidden features, revealed on Monday that she had come across a tiered warning label system that Twitter is toying with, apparently in an effort to expand its crackdown on ‘misinformation’. 

According to Wong, Twitter could potentially place problematic material into three categories: “Get the latest,” “Stay informed,” and “Misleading.” The new system appears to take a more nuanced approach to fact-checking, employing labels on content that may not be wrong but, in Twitter’s opinion, requires more context. 

As an example of how the labels might be employed, Wong created three separate tweets. Her first message, “Snorted 60 grams of dihydrogen monoxide and I’m not feeling so well now,” was countered with a “Get the latest” label that offered more information about water.

Wong explained that while the labels were real, she added her own text below them in order to demonstrate how the system might respond to alleged misinformation. 

A Twitter employee confirmed that the labels were genuine, describing them as “early experiments” as the company continues to target misinformation.

Forsided, 01.06.2021

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