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Twitter rolls out COVID misinformation warning labels. Will they target Chinese officials who blame US for outbreak?

Chris White 

Twitter will slap warning labels and other messages on coronavirus-related content the company deems harmful but perhaps not harmful enough to warrant removal.

The social media company will begin providing additional context and warning messages on some tweets containing disputed or misleading information about the pandemic, Twitter announced in a blog post Monday.

Twitter’s move came as Chinese officials engage in a concerted coronavirus disinformation campaign on the platform.

“Moving forward, we may use these labels and warning messages to provide additional explanations or clarifications in situations where the risks of harm associated with a Tweet are less severe but where people may still be confused or misled by the content,” Twitter noted in the post.

Moderators will filter such content through three categories: misleading information, disputed claims and unverified claims, the announcement noted. Misleading information will carry a label or be outright removed, depending on the severity of the content, while unverified claims will not have any action taken against them. Disputed claims will contain a label or a warning.

“Our teams are using and improving on internal systems to proactively monitor content related to COVID-19. These systems help ensure we’re not amplifying Tweets with these warnings or labels and detecting the high-visibility content quickly,” Twitter’s blog post notes. The company will also rely on “trusted partners to identify content that is likely to result in offline harm.”

Twitter’s Head of Integrity Yoel Roth explained in a Twitter post Monday that the “labels will apply to anyone sharing misleading information that meets the requirements of our policy, including world leaders.” Company spokeswoman Katie Rosborough told the Daily Caller News Foundation that the labels will apply to anyone. 

Twitter revised some of its policies to “protect the public conversation around COVID-19,” according to a March 4 blog post from the company. Advertisements that “opportunistically use the COVID-19 outbreak to target inappropriate ads” are also banned, the March post added.

The tech company, meanwhile, is still refusing to remove a Chinese official’s tweets suggesting the U.S. Army is responsible for injecting coronavirus into Wuhan, China, where experts believe the virus originated. Coronavirus, or COVID-19, has killed more than 280,000 people worldwide.

“When did Patient Zero appear in the United States? How many people are infected? What is the name of the hospital?” Lijian Zhao, deputy director of China’s Foreign Ministry Information Department, said in a March 12 tweet. “It may be that the US military brought the epidemic to Wuhan.”

Zhao added: “America needs to be transparent! The United States owes us an explanation!” Zhao also falsely stated in the tweet that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Director Robert Redfield was “arrested” before floating the conspiracy theory to his 317,000 followers.

A spokesman told the DCNF on March 13 that the official’s tweets do not violate company policies.

Content created by The Daily Caller News Foundation is available without charge to any eligible news publisher that can provide a large audience. For licensing opportunities of our original content, please contact licensing@dailycallernewsfoundation.org.

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  1. The whole covid thing is BS. The CDC told doctors to lie about cause of death and that is well documented. So those death totals you see are fake. They have no clue how many people have had the virus so the only ratios are are honest come from germany and germany says its death rate is .o1%.

    Now we find out obama $3.7 million to the wuhan lab to develop this virus. So obama and fusci are busy killing people with the corona virus.

    The democrat states are trying to ruin the economy. If your out of work ame the democrats.

    Democrats have prove they are sick twist assez.

  2. Douglas Wright May 12, 2020

    8 becomes more apparent every single day that Twitter is not only a mouth piece for that Democratic Party of America they are also the mouth piece for China. Just like the world health organization they just continue to spread the lives that China wants us to believe. Twitter should be ashamed of themselves and should start acting and believing in the 1st amendment and stead of censoring everything that a Republic and might say

  3. Chris Horner May 12, 2020

    So, let me get this straight – if someone posts something critical of Obama or the left’s Muslim ‘anointed ones’, they get called a racist Russian Bot, their post is deleted and account suspended. Yet, if @jack’s ‘Dear Leader’ tells him to jump – he does nothing to their account, leaves the post up, and posts a ‘warning’ that it may not be true. At the same time, the ANQUEEFA basement dwellers and jihadi terrorists are able to use the platform with little fear of repercussions. Yet the left continues to whine that Trump is the bad guy?

    No wonder Hillary calls them ‘useful idiots’ – they’ll believe whatever they’re told.

  4. Sheldon Nadler May 12, 2020

    Who the hell made Twitter king shit of bird island? They are going to decide what is good and what is bad? Bullshit!

  5. Greg ostman May 12, 2020

    Just like any media that’s ever existed, the users have the personnel choice to not use it if it goes beyond what’s acceptable to me or you. Stuff on social media can be useful, entertaining but since nowadays everything has gotten politicized and turned into,us against them, crap! I recall when emails first became a tool it very quickly became an attack tool and I assume it made people feel almost anonymous! I guess it’s easier for us to happily tap away on a keyboard while zinging and spewing. Better than face to face dealings I guess. Wonder how different people would be if all social media had to be done FaceTime style or IMO there was no social media! I know whoever the Powers that Be are , would lose the easiest way to control the masses that’s ever invented and the great thing is the world has been totally compliant! Talk about useful idiots! So in regards to twitter’s clearly biased methods for controlling speech then the only logical thing to do is get off of it and if enough people did they would either Change or go away! Seriously folks if you can’t live without it then bigger problems are coming!

  6. Patriotson2 May 13, 2020

    Oh we can assume China has a friend in Twitter.

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