Reuters: Elon Musk’s Twitter slow to act on misleading U.S. election content, experts say
Reuters: Elon Musk's Twitter slow to act on misleading U.S. election content, experts say
Nov 8 (Reuters) – Election experts reported the spread of new falsehoods across Twitter (TWTR.MX) and other social media services on Tuesday as Americans voted in midterm elections, four days after Twitter Inc fired half its staff and new owner Elon Musk tweeted a recommendation to vote for Republican candidates.
The nonpartisan watchdog group Common Cause, which monitors social media for voter suppression efforts, said that Twitter took no action on high-profile posts that the organization flagged on Tuesday as problematic. …
Common Cause said Twitter posts from Republican candidates Marjorie Taylor Greene and Kari Lake should have included warning labels under the company’s civic integrity policy, which governs misleading tweets about elections. Posts by Greene and Lake drew tens of thousands of likes and retweets on Twitter.
Common Cause also noted a “big slowdown” in Twitter’s response time since Friday, when layoffs gutted many of the company’s teams responsible for elevating credible information.
“Twitter is hopeless and not responding beyond replying that they are looking into something and then going dark on it for days,” the group said, noting that the company’s response time was normally about one to three hours.
More than 120 advocacy organizations including Common Cause in May urged – without success – social media companies to introduce “circuit breakers” to curtail the rapid spread of misleading election information by popular accounts. …
Also drawing engagement were posts baselessly warning voters that Wi-Fi networks at polling locations could enable hacking of voting machines, Jesse Littlewood, vice president for campaigns at Common Cause, told a news briefing.
The falsehoods appeared to originate on messaging app Telegram before spreading to more mainstream social media services, according to Common Cause. A Reuters review found examples on Twitter, TikTok and Meta’s (META.O) Facebook.