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Twitter launches Birdwatch to fight spread of misleading information

Posted at 2:10 PM, Jan 25, 2021

On Monday, Twitter launched a feature that'll help fight the spread of misleading information on the social media platform.

Birdwatch will allow users to identify information that they believe to be misleading or false, Twitter explained in a press release. The company is currently looking for people to test out the standalone section in the U.S.

"Birdwatch allows people to identify information in Tweets they believe is misleading and write notes that provide informative context," Twitter Vice President of Product Keith Coleman said in a blog post. "We believe this approach has the potential to respond quickly when misleading information spreads, adding context that people trust and find valuable. Eventually, we aim to make notes visible directly on Tweets for the global Twitter audience, when there is consensus from a broad and diverse set of contributors."

Coleman explained that users would be able to flag tweets on the Birdwatch site that they find misleading, add context via notes, and rate the messages based on whether they find them helpful or not.

Over the past several months, Twitter has taken the initiative to flag tweets that share misinformation about COVID-19, voter fraud, and even suspending former President Donald Trump from the platform for spreading misinformation.

On Monday, E.W. Scripps and The News Literacy Project kicked off National News Literacy Week, which will help journalists or anyone looking to strengthen their news literacy in 2021.