Social Media

Twitter Moves To Thwart Spoofing Of US Candidates

The Associated Press reports: Twitter is bringing back special labels to help users identify accounts and tweets from U.S. political candidates. The company, which first used such labels for the midterms last year, said it is trying to provide users with original sources of information and prevent spoofed and fake accounts from fooling voters. Many political candidates already have blue …

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FTC May Block Facebook From Bundling Its Apps

Business Insider reports:  The Federal Trade Commission is mulling whether to file an injunction against the social networking giant that could block it from its plans to stitch together its WhatsApp messaging service with the chat features of Instagram and those of its core Facebook app. The injunction could also block the company from enforcing its rules about how apps …

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YouTube Stiffens Anti-Harassment Policies, Demeaning Language Rules After Right Winger’s Anti-Gay Attacks

The Verge reports: YouTube today announced an expansion of its anti-harassment policy that will ban video creators from insulting one another on the basis of their race, gender expression, or sexual orientation — even if the person they are insulting is a popular creator, celebrity, politician, or other public figure. The new policy comes several months after YouTube was criticized …

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Fox & Friends Host Claims He Was Banned By Twitter

Deadline reports: Fox and Friends host Pete Hegseth claimed he was banned from Twitter Saturday for posting an anti-American manifesto from Pensacola shooter Mohammed Alshamrani. Hegseth posted the screenshots Sunday showing his tweet, and said the actions were “Islamist terror.” He posted the messages from Alshamrani’s Twitter account. “The coward posted it just hours before his terrorist attack,” Hegseth wrote. …

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STUDY: Fake News Getting Worse On Social Media

Politico reports: Social media companies from Facebook to YouTube are failing to stop people from setting up fake accounts, buying false online followers and promoting inauthentic digital content, according to a report published Friday by a NATO-accredited group. The findings — based on analysts purchasing social media manipulation tools and then testing how the companies responded — stand in stark …

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Google/YouTube Has Booted Over 300 Trump Ads

CBS News reports: In response to concerns raised after the 2016 election cycle, Google and YouTube, like Facebook, keep a searchable archive of political ads that have run on the site. 60 Minutes reviewed the archive to learn more about President Trump’s problematic political ads. We found that over 300 video ads were taken down by Google and YouTube, mostly …

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Twitter Seeks To Save Accounts Of Deceased Users

Axios reports: Twitter said Wednesday it was putting on hold a plan to delete inactive accounts amid concerns that accounts from deceased users would be swept up in the purge. Why it matters: While it’s great to see Twitter clearing out the accounts of living people who aren’t using them, Twitter also represents an important record of those no longer …

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Wikipedia Founder: Twitter Should Ban Donald Trump

Politico reports: Donald Trump should have been banned from Twitter “a long time ago,” said Jimmy Wales, the founder of Wikipedia. Speaking at a media conference in Amsterdam, Wales said the U.S. president and other high-profile users such as entrepreneur Elon Musk were able to get away with statements on the social media platform which others would not. “A lot …

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POLL: Social Media Is Leading Source Of Govt News

The Associated Press reports: The irony of where Americans get their news about the government, and what sources they rely on to deliver news about the government they can trust, was exposed in a survey published this month by The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Opinion Research and USAFacts. It found that 54% of Americans say they get government-related information …

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Twitter Rolls Out Anti-Troll “Hide Replies” Function

TechCrunch reports: Twitter’s radical “Hide Replies” feature, one of the biggest changes to how Twitter works since the invention of the Retweet, is now available to Twitter’s global user base. The company says the feature will roll out to all Twitter users across platforms by today, with only one slight tweak since earlier tests. Designed to balance the conversation on …

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Twitter Bot Networks Attack Marie Yovanovitch

Buzzfeed News reports: The phrase “I hired Donald Trump to fire people like Yovanovitch” trended on Twitter Friday morning as former US ambassador to Ukraine Marie Yovanovitch testified in front of the impeachment inquiry held by the House Intelligence Committee. And while it may have seemed like a spontaneous outcry from supporters of the president, the phrase has spread at …

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Instagram To Test Hiding “Likes” Counter On Posts

NPR reports: Like seriously, if you post something to the ‘gram and not one of your followers hits “like” is it even worth sharing? Beginning next week, some U.S. users of Instagram will be able to test this theory as the social media platform will begin hiding the “likes” counter that appears underneath a posted photo or video. “Right now …

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Facebook Deleting Mentions Of Whistleblower’s Name

The Associated Press reports: Facebook says it is deleting the name of the person who has been identified in conservative circles as the whistleblower who triggered a congressional impeachment inquiry into President Donald Trump’s actions. The company said Friday that mention of the potential whistleblower’s name violates Facebook’s “coordinating harm policy,” which prohibits material that could identify a “witness, informant, …

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Lawmaker Shuts Down Climate Heckler: “OK, Boomer”

CBS News reports: A 25-year-old New Zealand lawmaker shut down a heckler during a climate change speech with a two-word comeback aimed at older people. Chlöe Swabrick, who belongs to the Green Party, silenced a fellow Parliament member by retorting, “OK, boomer” — a phrase popularized by young people to call out folks from the baby boomer generation. The phrase …

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Two Twitter Staffers Charged With Spying For Saudis

The Washington Post reports: The DOJ  has charged two former Twitter employees with spying for Saudi Arabia in a case that raises concerns about the ability of Silicon Valley to protect the private information of dissidents and other users from repressive governments. The charges came a day after the arrest of one of the former Twitter employees, Ahmad Abouammo, a …

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False Political Posts Viewed 150M Times On FB In 2019

Politico reports: False news reports that attack U.S. politicians have been viewed more than 150 million times on Facebook since the beginning of 2019, according to an analysis published Wednesday that points to a growing threat of deception swamping next year’s elections. The analysis, from the activist group Avaaz, highlights how misinformation — often targeting political figures like House Speaker …

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More US Teenagers Now Use TikTok Than Facebook

Axios reports: More young teenagers use TikTok than Facebook, according to a new report from Morning Consult. Instagram and Snapchat still beat TikTok by wide margins, but the viral Chinese karaoke app has quickly become popular amongst Generation Z. Why it matters: TikTok is following a familiar trajectory, beginning with beating out Facebook as a more popular app for young …

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YouTube Bans Sebastian Gorka For Copyright Violations

The Daily Beast reports: YouTube banned Sebastian Gorka from its platform on Monday, apparently because the former Trump White House adviser refused to stop playing songs from pop rock band Imagine Dragons on episodes of his radio show that were later uploaded to the site. Gorka, a notoriously combative Trump ally, has regularly played Imagine Dragons songs on his radio …

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GOP Worries Facebook Might Reverse On Political Ads

Axios reports: Top Republicans are privately worried about a new threat to President Trump’s campaign: the possibility of Facebook pulling a Twitter and banning political ads. Facebook says it won’t, but future regulatory pressure could change that. If Facebook were to ban — or even limit — ads, it could upend Trump’s fundraising and re-election plan, GOP officials tell Axios. …

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Twitter To Ban All Political Ads Worldwide Starting 11/22

The Verge reports: Twitter is banning all political ads globally, starting November 22nd, according to tweets by the company’s CEO Jack Dorsey on Wednesday. The changes will affect both candidate ads and issue ads, although ads encouraging voter registration will still be allowed, along with other exceptions. Dorsey said a full policy will be made available to the public on …

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