Nieman Foundation at Harvard
HOME
          
LATEST STORY
“‘Warp speed’ was an unfortunate term”: With Covid-19, vaccine messaging faces an unprecedented test
ABOUT                    SUBSCRIBE
Aug. 7, 2020, 12:43 p.m.
LINK: blog.twitter.com  ➚   |   Posted by: Hanaa' Tameez   |   August 7, 2020

Twitter is going to start labeling state-run news organizations as such, it announced on Thursday. It will also explicitly label the accounts of those outlets’ editors-in-chief and their senior staffers, as well as “key government officials, including foreign ministers, institutional entities, ambassadors, official spokespeople, and key diplomatic leaders.”

“State-affiliated media is defined as outlets where the state exercises control over editorial content through financial resources, direct or indirect political pressures, and/or control over production and distribution,” Twitter’s blog post about the change says. “Unlike independent media, state-affiliated media frequently use their news coverage as a means to advance a political agenda. We believe that people have the right to know when a media account is affiliated directly or indirectly with a state actor.”

That means that Russia’s RT and China’s Xinhua News will get the label, while the United Kingdom’s BBC and NPR in the United States will not because they’re publicly funded institutions with editorial independence.

On labeling government officials, Twitter will start with permanent members of the United Nations Security Council: the United States, the United Kingdom, China, France, and Russia. However, it won’t label personal accounts for politicians and high-ranking officials. So @realDonaldTrump, the account the United States president actually tweets from, won’t get the label, but @POTUS will. That’s because “these accounts enjoy widespread name recognition, media attention, and public awareness.”

Last year, Twitter banned state-run news advertising and political advertising on the platform.

Show tags Show comments / Leave a comment
 
Join the 50,000 who get the freshest future-of-journalism news in our daily email.
“‘Warp speed’ was an unfortunate term”: With Covid-19, vaccine messaging faces an unprecedented test
A Covid-19 vaccine is coming. Will public health messaging be enough to convince Americans to get it?
The fight over racism, sexism, and other misconduct in public radio isn’t going away
Plus: Unions at HuffPost, Wired, and the Dallas Morning News continue to fight for pay equity and recognition; how “objectivity” has played into immigration reporting; and a new Python script helps reporters keep diversity in style.
As local news outlets shift to subscription, they wonder: What should Facebook’s role be?
“Look, I know you got that Facebook comment, but it’s the vocal minority. There’s a silent majority who are actually paying for our work.”