29 Nov 2022

White House keeping a 'close eye' on misinformation on Twitter

3:09 pm on 29 November 2022
(FILES) In this file photo taken on October 28, 2022, the Twitter logo outside their headquarters in San Francisco, California. - Is it a pipe dream or a possibility? Elon Musk wants to meaningfully diversify Twitter’s revenue stream beyond advertising, but no major social network has managed so far to go without ads altogether. Something of a gold standard, social media ads can be fine-tuned and tailored to individual users on a mass scale, and have been particularly lucrative for Meta's Facebook and Instagram, as well as Google. (Photo by Constanza HEVIA / AFP)

The White House says it is monitoring Twitter for misinformation. Photo: AFP

The White House says it is monitoring social media platform Twitter, now under the stewardship of new chief executive Elon Musk, for misinformation.

"This is something that we're certainly keeping an eye on," said White House spokesperson Karine Jean-Pierre, when asked about Twitter becoming a vector for misinformation.

Jean-Pierre said it was the responsibility of social media platforms to "make sure that when it comes to misinformation, when it comes to the hate that we're seeing, that... they take action, that they continue to take action."

Musk, who has reinstated a number of Twitter accounts that had been previously suspended, said at the weekend that new user signups were at an "all-time high." But there has been a mass exodus of advertisers over concerns about verification and hate speech that Musk blames on activist groups exerting pressure on companies.

"We're all keeping a close eye on this," Jean-Pierre told reporters at the White House. "Social media companies have a responsibility to prevent their platforms from being used by any user to incite violence, especially violence directed at individual communities."

Meanwhile, clips from the terrorist's video of the Christchurch mosque attacks which were uploaded to Twitter last week were not picked up as harmful.

A spokesperson for Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern said Twitter's automated reporting function had failed to identify the content as harmful.

Following a request from the New Zealand government the clips have now been removed.

- Reuters / RNZ

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