11.06.2020 0

Will Twitter and Facebook Play Fair?

By Catherine Mortensen

“Some or all of the content shared in this Tweet is disputed and might be misleading about an election or other civic process.” – Twitter

The day after the election Twitter outright censored one of President Donald Trump’s tweets and have labeled many others that they disagree with as “misleading.”  Trump’s son, Eric, took a screen shot of the censored presidential tweet.

Twitter flagged Trump tweet, “Big legal win in Pennsylvania” misleading. Trump was referring to a judge giving the Trump campaign close-up observation of the counting of ballots in that state.  Trump’s tweet doesn’t seem problematic.

Twitter hit Trump with another “misleading” label when he retweeted his son Eric saying, “The amount of FRAUD being reported in Pennsylvania, Michigan, Nevada, Georgia and Wisconsin is unreal.” Once again, that is simply a statement of fact. Either the President’s retweet or Eric’s original tweet was censored by Twitter because both are now gone.

Since November 4th, the social media giant has labeled at least eight of Trump’s tweets as misleading, but not a single one of Joe Biden’s. Check out Biden’s far more misleading and unverifiable claims on Twitter, such as “We’re gonna win this,” and “I am confident I will emerge victorious.”

It appears Twitter has a bias against Trump. An analysis of Facebook’s handling of the two candidates reveals a more even-handed approach.

Facebook added a content warning label to 19 out of 20 Trump posts between Nov. 3 at 6 pm to Nov. 5 at 4 pm.  They flagged benign statements such as WE ARE LOOKING REALLY GOOD ALL OVER THE COUNTRY. THANK YOU!It’s outrageous that a twenty-something tech geek is making decisions about content that is so harmless.

Facebook wasn’t quite as heavy-handed in labeling Biden’s Facebook posts. During that same 2-hour period, they slapped content labels on 33 out of 36 Biden posts.

Prior to the election, Facebook and Twitter set up guidelines to prevent false claims of victory from inciting violence.  On it’s website, Facebook said they have more than 35,000 people across the company working on safety and security issues.

“If a candidate or party declares premature victory before a race is called by major media outlets, we will add more specific information in the notifications that counting is still in progress and no winner has been determined,” noted Facebook.

Twitter took a similar approach, writing on their blog, “We will label Tweets that falsely claim a win for any candidate and will remove Tweets that encourage violence or call for people to interfere with election results or the smooth operation of polling places.”

Americans for Limited Government President Rick Manning is concerned that social media elites and mainstream media will collude to blame Trump supporters for any post-election violence that may erupt if Trump wins the election.

“They will allow Joe Biden to declare victory and when the true vote count finally comes in, showing Trump the winner, the media will blame Trump supporters should the BLM/Antifa wing of Biden’s party incite violence. We will not let the media elite bully us into declaring Joe Biden president.”

Catherine Mortensen is Vice President of Communications at Americans for Limited Government.

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