Twitter to act strongly on false posts about vaccines
Twitter said that it would scrub false posts about Covid-19 vaccines from the beginning of next week, following what Facebook and YouTube did. Twitter’s policy update, announced in a blog post also said users may have to remove tweets with false claims about the adverse effects of receiving COVID-19 vaccines.
Facebook Inc. and Alphabet-owned YouTube have both off late announced bans on false claims being spread about the vaccine that goes against information from public health experts. YouTube and Facebook have previously announced strict policies to censor vaccine misinformation and efforts to disrupt vaccination campaigns.
The new policy by Twitter will include action against claims online that the vaccine is used to deliberately cause harm or control people.
Beginning next week, Twitter plans to prioritize the removal of the misleading information, and during the weeks ahead, will begin to label Tweets that contain potentially harmful information about the coronavirus vaccines.
Twitter stated, “The Company will put it on a priority to remove the misleading information that is harmful, and begin to label tweets that contain potentially misleading information about the vaccines.” The company further said, “Our main focus will be on mitigating misleading information that presents the biggest probable harm to people’s health and wellbeing.”
The social media platform Twitter is already targeting posts containing false information on how the virus spreads and the efficacy of public health measures such as mask-wearing.
Conspiracy theories and misinformation about the coronavirus and its potential vaccines have thrived on social media platforms during the pandemic.
Twitter previously also required users to remove tweets with false or misleading information about the nature of the coronavirus, the efficacy or safety of preventative measures or treatments, or the risk of infection or death. The company also stated that it hides such tweets and blocks users from tweeting again until they remove them.
Vaccination campaigns have already started in several countries, including Britain, the United States, and Canada, and are about to start in the European Union.