Indian lawmakers accuse Facebook of political bias
Manish Singh

Facebook is facing heat in India, its biggest market by users, over a report that claimed the company compromised its hate speech policy to favor the ruling party. Politicians from both Bharatiya Janata Party, which rules the government in India, and opposition Indian National Congress lambasted Facebook for its supposed favoritism to the other and […]

Twitter’s POTUS account will reportedly be reset to zero followers when Biden takes over
Brian Heater

In this country, we have a longstanding peaceful transfer of power for the executive office, even in the wake of the hardest-fought elections. Certain circumstances have led many to question whether the tradition will continue come January 20. Despite his very vocal protestations, however, the current president has agreed to step aside, should all of […]

Twitter labeled 300,000 US election tweets — around 0.2%
Brian Heater

Just over a week after the U.S. elections, Twitter has offered a breakdown of some of its efforts to label misleading tweets. The site says that from October 27 to November 11, it labeled some 300,000 tweets as part of its Civic Integrity Policy. That amounts to around 0.2% of the total number of election-related […]

TikTok takes down election misinformation aimed at younger users
Sarah Perez

TikTok confirmed today it has taken down videos spreading election misinformation that had been posted to two high-profile Republican-supporting accounts, The Republican Hype House and The Republican Boys. The accounts, popular with young, conservative voters, reach more than a million followers combined, and have the potential to reach even more users who would find their […]

Trump will lose protected Twitter status after his presidency
Brian Heater

Twitter has at various times acknowledged that Donald Trump isn’t bound by the same rules that govern the rest of us. This executive privilege has allowed him to continue posting comments that could have long ago gotten any normal person banned from the platform. More recently, the service has sought to balance misinformation/disinformation with warning […]

Spotify to ‘pause’ running political ads, citing lack of proper review
Brian Heater

Ever since the run up to the 2016 U.S. Presidential Election (and, arguably, well before that), political ads have become a major sticking point on social media sites looking to crack down on misinformation. Facebook has grappled with the issue to the satisfaction of virtually no one, while Twitter has shut them down altogether. Ad […]

Marxism intensifies - FML

Today, after three weeks of suffering from COVID, I returned to work. I met with my boss, and was written up for absenteeism. Oh, and we're closing early because there are ongoing riots. Oh, and we lost the contract and I'm unemployed in three weeks. FML

TikTok launches a U.S. elections guide in its app
Sarah Perez

Though TikTok is in the middle of fighting off the Trump administration’s attempt to ban its app in the U.S. over data privacy concerns, the company today is launching a new feature focused on the 2020 U.S. elections. TikTok announced this morning it’s introducing an in-app guide to the elections offering its 100 million U.S. […]

YouTube removes ads from, but won’t pull, ‘Trump Won’ video following backlash
Brian Heater

This year’s presidential election has already proven to be a considerable test of the U.S. democratic system. It’s also been doing a fine job testing the systems behind leading social networks four years after a rather disinformation-ridden election. Twitter today has proven to be reasonably swift — if not entirely proactive — in its push […]

We must consider secure online voting
Walter Thompson

We should not be debating whether online voting should exist, but rather asking: What is the most secure way to facilitate electronic voting?

A voting app by Shadow Inc. takes center stage at chaotic Iowa caucuses
Brian Heater

American democracy can be confusing and messy. There is, perhaps, no better example than last night’s Iowa caucuses. The votes that kick off presidential primary season are, at once, a wonderful celebration of citizen participation in representative democracy and a rather complex system that remains a mystery to many of those outside the nation’s 31st most […]

Zuckerberg defends political ads that will be 0.5% of 2020 revenue
Josh Constine

As Jack Dorsey announced his company Twitter would drop all political ads, Facebook CEO Zuckerberg doubled-down on his policy of refusing to fact check politicians’ ads. “At times of social tension there has often been an urge to pull back on free expression . . . We will be best served over the long term […]

Facebook and Instagram notifications warn U.S. users there’s no winner yet in Presidential Election
Sarah Perez

Facebook and Instagram are running notifications in their respective apps informing U.S. users that the winner of the 2020 U.S. Presidential Election has not yet been determined. In large pop-ups appearing at the top of the Facebook and Instagram News Feeds, the notification states that “Votes Are Being Counted” and directs users to other in-app […]

Facebook promises not to stop politicians’ lies & hate
Josh Constine

Facebook confirms it won’t fact-check politicians’ speech or block their content if it’s newsworthy even if it violates the site’s hatespeech rules or other policies. This cementing of its policy comes from Facebook’s head of global policy and communication Nick Clegg who gave a speech today about Facebook’s plans to prevent interference in the 2020 […]

TikTok updates policies to ban deepfakes, expand fact-checks, and flag election misinfo
Sarah Perez

As uncertainty swirls around TikTok’s future in the U.S., the company this morning announced new Community Guidelines focused on helping keep misleading and deceptive content off its platform. The new rules aim to better clarify what’s allowed and not allowed on TikTok, broaden the app’s fact-checking partnerships ahead of the U.S. election, and ban the […]

Facebook has paused election reminders in Europe after data watchdog raises transparency concerns
Natasha Lomas

Big tech’s lead privacy regulator in Europe has intervened to flag transparency concerns about a Facebook election reminder feature — asking the tech giant to provide it with information about what data it collects from users who interact with the notification and how their personal data is used, including whether it’s used for targeting them […]

Tuesday Company acquires VoteWithMe as tech for politics looks to consolidate ahead of 2020
Jonathan Shieber

Tuesday Company, the organizational toolkit for political advocacy groups and candidates, has taken another step to consolidate its position in the growing market for tech-enabled political outreach with the acquisition of the voting mobilization service VoteWithMe. Launched in the wake of the 2016 election by three former staffers from Hillary Clinton’s campaign for the presidency, […]

Mark Zuckerberg actually calls for regulation of content, elections, privacy
Brian Heater

It’s been a busy day for Facebook exec op-eds. Earlier this morning, Sheryl Sandberg broke the site’s silence around the Christchurch massacre, and now Mark Zuckerberg is calling on governments and other bodies to increase regulation around the sorts of data in which Facebook traffics. He’s hoping to get out in front of heavy-handed regulation […]

Facebook bans politician of India’s ruling party for violating hate speech
Manish Singh

Facebook has banned a politician from India’s ruling party, Bharatiya Janata Party, for violating its policies against hate speech on its platform, the company said today, weeks after inaction on the politician’s posts landed the social giant in hot water in its biggest market by users. The company said it had removed profiles of T. […]

TikTok to add Election Day resources, live results from AP to its election guide
Sarah Perez

TikTok announced this morning it will expand the set of resources provided in its in-app election guide in the U.S. to include direct access to sites that help users get information about polling locations and hours, those that help people having voting difficulties, and those offering other details how the voting process works, and more. […]

Trump’s tweets likely to be impacted by Twitter’s new ‘abusive behavior’ notice
Brian Heater

Twitter didn’t name any names with today’s new feature news, but one extremely online user loomed large over the announcement. The company took to its Safety blog to announce the addition of a new “abusive behavior” label that users will have to click through to access content. This isn’t just any content warning, though. It […]

TikTok takes down some hashtags related to election misinformation, leaves others
Sarah Perez

As social media platforms struggle to get U.S. election misinformation under control with varying degrees of success, TikTok has taken new actions to stop people from searching and browsing select hashtags associated with misinformation and conspiracies related to the U.S. election results. The video app has redirected some hashtags — including #RiggedElection, #SharpieGate and others […]