Twitter expands civic integrity policy ahead of US election

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Twitter announced it’s expanding its civic integrity policy and will remove or label tweets containing false information intended to undermine public confidence in civic processes, including the 2020 US election.

According to a blog post announcing the expanded policy, this will include:

  • Tweets containing false or misleading information meant to confuse election laws or the officials executing them
  • Tweets with disputed claims or unverified information about election rigging, ballot tampering, vote tallying or election results certification
  • Tweets containing misleading claims about election results, including victory claims before the results have been verified or tweets encouraging unlawful tactics to prevent a peaceful transfer of power

Tweets labeled under the policy will also have reduced visibility across Twitter, though anyone following the account in question will still see and be able to retweet the labeled tweet.

“In recognition of the changing circumstances of how people will vote in 2020, and in line with our commitment to protecting the integrity of the election conversation, we’re expanding this existing framework,” explained Twitter.

Twitter added, “The goal is to further protect against content that could suppress the vote and help stop the spread of harmful misinformation that could compromise the integrity of an election or other civic process.”

Twitter will begin applying the policy next week and emphasized it will be “applied equally and judiciously for everyone.” President Donald Trump has already used social media to sow doubts about the election, and Twitter has already labeled several of his tweets as containing false or misleading information.

Facebook made similar changes to its platform last week, as It won’t approve any new political ads during the week leading up to the presidential election. Facebook will also link any candidate’s post declaring an early victory to vote counts from Reuters and the National Election Pool.