This photo shows the Twitter app on a smartphone in Philadelphia. AP/File
Twitter says it has begun labeling tweets that include misleading information about COVID-19 vaccines and using a “strike system” to eventually remove accounts that repeatedly violate its rules.
The company said on Monday that it has started using human reviewers to assess whether tweets violate its policy against COVID vaccine misinformation. Eventually, the work will be done by a combination of humans and automation, it said.
Twitter had already banned some COVID-related misinformation in December, including falsehoods about how the virus spreads, whether masks are effective and the risk of infection and death.
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“Through the use of the strike system, we hope to educate people on why certain content breaks our rules so they have the opportunity to further consider their behavior and their impact on the public conversation,” Twitter said in a blog post on Monday.
People with one violation - or strike - will see no action. Two strikes will lead to an account being locked for 12 hours. Five or more will get a user permanently banned from Twitter.
Facebook has also stepped up its vaccine misinformation fight after years of half-hearted enforcement. It announced an expanded policy last month that includes all vaccines - not just those against COVID-19.
San Francisco-based Twitter said the new labels only apply to COVID vaccines, not others.
The post contained a video clip, from an interview with Fox & Friends earlier in the day, in which Trump claimed that children are "almost immune" to COVID-19.
Maduro in January described Carvativir, an oral solution derived from thyme, as a “miracle” medication that neutralizes the coronavirus with no side effects, a claim doctors say is not backed by science.
Misinformation about vaccination has spread far on social media in many countries in recent years — including during major vaccination campaigns to prevent polio in Pakistan and to immunise against yellow fever in South America.
Facebook, Twitter and Google have been under fire all over the world for not doing enough to police their platforms for misinformation. The Singaporean government thinks it has a solution: a law that imposes jail time and hundreds of thousands of dollars in potential fines for posting or failing to correct what it calls “online falsehoods” that harm the public interest.
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In the video, a lion can be seen freely roaming around in a village before it is taken aback by the invasion of the dogs, who succeed in chasing away the majestic creature. The big cat soon runs towards a kine of cows standing nearby.
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