Twitter targets 5G Covid claims - Mobile World Live

Twitter targets 5G Covid claims

23 APR 2020

Twitter told Mobile World Live (MWL) it continued to boost efforts to combat misinformation, highlighting recent attacks on 5G infrastructure and posts which cause widespread panic as examples of the dangers of misinformation.

A company representative said Twitter was “prioritising the removal of Covid-19 (coronavirus) content when it has a call to action that could potentially cause harm”, but emphasised freedom of speech remained a balancing act. With this in mind, they stated no enforcement action will be taken on posts containing incomplete or disputed information about the pandemic.

Since amending its policies on harmful content in mid-March, Twitter removed more than 2,200 tweets, with automated systems challenging in excess of 3.4 million accounts for “targeting discussions around Covid-19 with spammy or manipulative behaviours”.

The company said it broadened guidance “on unverified claims that incite people to engage in harmful activity; could lead to the destruction or damage of critical 5G infrastructure; or could lead to widespread panic, social unrest or large-scale disorder”.

As an example, the social media company stated its move tackled posts which encourage people to buy large amounts of food due to claims of shipments shortages, or to attack mobile towers to stop the spread of the virus.

Earlier this month, YouTube also moved to tackle content claiming a connection between 5G and the disease.

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Yanitsa Boyadzhieva

Yanitsa joins Mobile World Live as a Reporter based in London. She has more than 5 years’ experience at various media outlets in her home country Bulgaria. She started her career as a political reporter, followed by taking editor roles...

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