Updating our Approach to Misleading Information: Twitter
In serving the public conversation, our goal is to make it easy to find credible information on Twitter and to limit the spread of potentially harmful and misleading content. 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.
In March, we broadened our policy guidance to address content that goes directly against guidance on COVID-19 from authoritative sources of global and local public health information. Moving forward, 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. This will make it easier to find facts and make informed decisions about what people see on Twitter.
New labels and warnings
During active conversations about disputed issues, it can be helpful to see additional context from trusted sources. Earlier this year, we introduced a new label for Tweets containing synthetic and manipulated media. Similar labels will now appear on Tweets containing potentially harmful, misleading information related to COVID-19. This will also apply to Tweets sent before today.
These labels will link to a Twitter-curated page or external trusted source containing additional information on the claims made within the Tweet.
Depending on the propensity for harm and type of misleading information, warnings may also be applied to a Tweet. These warnings will inform people that the information in the Tweet conflicts with public health experts’ guidance before they view it.
While false or misleading content can take many different forms, we will take action based on three broad categories:
Misleading information — statements or assertions that have been confirmed to be false or misleading by subject-matter experts, such as public health authorities.
Disputed claims — statements or assertions in which the accuracy, truthfulness, or credibility of the claim is contested or unknown.
Unverified claims — information (which could be true or false) that is unconfirmed at the time it is shared.
*We will continue to introduce new labels to provide context around different types of unverified claims and rumors as needed.
How will we identify these Tweets?
Our teams are using and improving on internal systems to proactively monitor content related to COVID-19. These systems help ensure we’re not amplifying Tweets with these warnings or labels and detecting the high-visibility content quickly. Additionally, we’ll continue to rely on trusted partners to identify content that is likely to result in offline harm. Given the dynamic situation, we will prioritize review and labeling of content that could lead to increased exposure or transmission.
We’ll learn a lot as we use these new labels, and are open to adjusting as we explore labeling different types of misleading information. This process is ongoing and we’ll work to make sure these and other labels and warnings show up across Twitter. Embedded Tweets and Tweets viewed by people not logged into Twitter may still appear without a label.
Serving the public conversation remains our overarching mission, and we’ll keep working to build tools and offer context so that people can find credible and authentic information on Twitter.