platforms

Lawmakers request monthly COVID-19 misinformation reports from online platforms

“Over the past several months, we have seen a troubling rise of false or misleading information related to COVID-19 disseminated by domestic and foreign actors on platforms such as yours. This disinformation has ranged from false statements about certain groups being immune from contracting the virus to unsubstantiated assertions about masks and vaccines. This type of disinformation is dangerous and can affect the health and well-being of people who use this false information to make critical health decisions during this pandemic.”

The tech giants reportedly agreed to provide the European Commission with detailed monthly disinformation reports back in June, and that’s something the lawmakers noted in their letters. “[W]e request that your company provide the Committee with monthly reports similar in scope to what you are providing the European Commission regarding your COVID-19 disinformation efforts as they relate to United States users of your platform,” they added.

There are plenty

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Twitter has apologized for slapping a COVID-19 label on tweets about 5G, but experts say the platform’s algorithm could be encouraging the spread of conspiracy theories

A pedestrian, wearing a protective mask and disposable gloves, holds a mobile phone while walking near an U.K. government issued coronavirus message in Birmingham, U.K., on Monday, April 6, 2020. Telecom masts that enable the next generation of wireless communication were set on fire in the U.K. in recent days, apparently by people motivated by a theory that the tech helps spread the coronavirus.
A pedestrian, wearing a protective mask and disposable gloves, holds a mobile phone while walking near an U.K. government issued coronavirus message in Birmingham, U.K., on Monday, April 6, 2020. Telecom masts that enable the next generation of wireless communication were set on fire in the U.K. in recent days, apparently by people motivated by a theory that the tech helps spread the coronavirus.

Darren Staples/Bloomberg via Getty Images

  • On Friday, Twitter users noticed that the platform was marking tweets mentioning “5G” or “oxygen” with a warning about COVID-19 misinformation.

  • Mislabeling tweets that link 5G and COVID-19 could help to “raise the profile” of the popular conspiracy theory that the cellular technology caused the coronavirus outbreak, according to social media researcher Wasim Ahmed.

  • In a statement to Business Insider, Twitter said it had make a mistake and was working to “improve” its labeling process. It blamed the error on the

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