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Twitter Will Begin Removing 'Harmful Misleading Information' About Covid-19 Vaccine

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Twitter Will Begin Removing 'Harmful Misleading Information' About Covid-19 Vaccine

Twitter has announced that it will begin removing posts containing 'harmful misleading information' about the coronavirus vaccine.

In a blog post, the social media giant said that from Monday it would begin advancing its Covid-19 policy and removing tweets that contain potentially dangerous misinformation about the vaccine.

Twitter will begin removing misinformation about the coronavirus vaccine. Credit: PA
Twitter will begin removing misinformation about the coronavirus vaccine. Credit: PA

The company listed examples as follows:

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  • False claims that suggest immunizations and vaccines are used to intentionally cause harm to or control populations, including statements about vaccines that invoke a deliberate conspiracy;
  • False claims which have been widely debunked about the adverse impacts or effects of receiving vaccinations; or
  • False claims that Covid-19 is not real or not serious, and therefore that vaccinations are unnecessary.

Starting next year, Twitter may also begin putting warnings on tweets containing 'unsubstantiated rumours, disputed claims, as well as incomplete or out-of-context information about vaccines'.

Such tweets will also link to authoritative sources of public health information.

Twitter said it has an 'important role to play' in helping the planet to overcome the pandemic.

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Announcing the new vaccine misinformation policy, the company said: "In the context of a global pandemic, vaccine misinformation presents a significant and growing public health challenge - and we all have a role to play.

"We are focused on mitigating misleading information that presents the biggest potential harm to people's health and wellbeing. Twitter has an important role to play as a place for good faith public debate and discussion around these critical public health matters."

It continued: "Using a combination of technology and human review, we will begin enforcing this updated policy on 21 December, and expanding our actions during the following weeks.

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"We will enforce this policy in close consultation with local, national and global public health authorities around the world, and will strive to be iterative and transparent in our approach.

"We remained focused on helping people find credible health information, verifying public health experts, and updating our policies in an iterative and transparent approach."

The move comes after Facebook announced earlier this month that it is banning anti-vaccine content.

Kang-Xing Jin, head of Facebook Health, said: "Given the recent news that Covid-19 vaccines will soon be rolling out around the world, over the coming weeks we will start removing false claims about these vaccines that have been debunked by public health experts on Facebook and Instagram.

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"We will also remove conspiracy theories about Covid-19 vaccines that we know today are false.

"We will not be able to start enforcing these policies overnight. Since it's early and facts about Covid-19 vaccines will continue to evolve, we will regularly update the claims we remove based on guidance from public health authorities as they learn more."

Featured Image Credit: PA

Topics: World News, vaccine, Coronavirus, Social Media, Twitter

Jake Massey
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