Categories misinformation

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Pro-Trump Twitter figure arrested for spreading vote-by-text disinformation in 2016

The man behind a once-influential pro-Trump account is facing charges of election interference for allegedly disseminating voting disinformation on Twitter in 2016. Federal prosecutors allege that Douglass Mackey, who used the name “Ricky Vaughn” on Twitter, encouraged people to cast their ballot via text or on social media, effectively tricking others […]

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Threat of inauguration violence casts a long shadow over social media

As the U.S. heads into one of the most perilous phases of American democracy since the Civil War, social media companies are scrambling to shore up their patchwork defenses for a moment they appear to have believed would never come. Most major platforms pulled the emergency break last week, deplatforming […]

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Facebook will turn all US political advertising off again after Georgia runoffs

Georgia is the only state in the U.S. right now where Facebook allows political ads to run, but after Tuesday’s polls close that’s set to change. According to Facebook’s site detailing changes to its ad policies and a story from Axios, the company will no longer allow political and social […]

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MIT professor wants to overhaul ‘The Hype Machine’ that powers social media

More than 3.6 billion people use social media, and its runaway success has left the industry at a crossroads. There are now heated debates in Washington and Brussels over the future of antitrust regulation for this market, whether platform operators should filter certain content (and if so, which types), and […]

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YouTube declares war on US election misinformation… a month late

As Twitter and Facebook scrambled to institute new policies for the 2020 election, YouTube was… mostly quiet. The platform didn’t make any flashy announcements about a crackdown on election-related misinformation, nor did it really fully grapple with its massive role in distributing information during what was widely regarded as an […]

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Facebook hits pause on algorithmic recommendations for political and social issue groups

With just days to go before the U.S. election, Facebook quietly suspended one of its most worrisome features. During Wednesday’s Senate hearing, Senator Ed Markey asked Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg about reports that his company has long known its group recommendations push people toward more extreme content. Zuckerberg responded that […]

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Twitter starts showing all US users election misinformation warnings

Starting today, Twitter users in the U.S. will see two large notices at the top of their feeds that aim to “preemptively debunk” misinformation related to voting. The striking messages are designed to push back against the deluge of false claims about the 2020 election. One notice warns users that […]

Facebook and Instagram will pin vote-by-mail explainers to top of feeds

Starting this weekend, everyone of voting age in the U.S. will begin seeing informational videos at the top of Instagram and Facebook, offering tips and state-specific guidance on how to vote through the mail. The videos will be offered in both English and Spanish. The vote-by-mail videos will run on […]

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Changing how retweets work, Twitter seeks to slow down election misinformation

Twitter announced a major set of changes to the way its platform would work Friday as the social network braces for the most contentious, uncertain and potentially high stakes election in modern U.S. history. In what will likely be the most noticeable change, Twitter will try a new tactic to […]

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Facebook says it will ban QAnon across its platforms

Facebook expanded a ban on QAnon-related content on its various social platforms Tuesday, deepening a previous prohibition on QAnon-related groups that had “discussed potential violence,” according to the company. Today’s move by Facebook to not only ban violent QAnon content but “any Facebook Pages, Groups and Instagram accounts representing QAnon” […]