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Twitter’s latest features are all about curbing election misinformation

As the midterm elections approach in the U.S., one social media platform this week has announced further measures it will take to combat misinformation in the lead-up to this fall’s congressional elections.

On Thursday, Twitter published a blog post in which it detailed its plans on curtailing misinformation on its platform, especially as it relates to the 2022 U.S. midterm elections. Of particular note was a series of new misinformation-related features Twitter plans to launch for use in the months leading up to the midterm elections.

Twitter's mockup of its new elections-related Explore tab.
Twitter

These new features include event hubs for states, a national event page, a “dedicated Explore tab,” and new safeguards for accounts belonging to candidates, government officials, and journalists.

Twitter says that it has already started rolling out “state-specific event hubs” and that on these pages users can expect to see election information from state officials and local news outlets. Twitter will also add a “nationally focused Event page” that all U.S. users will be able to access.

There is also supposed to be a new election-specific tab in the Explore section (see above photo). This new tab is expected to include news and resources for specific states, curated national news from “reputable news outlets,” and public service announcements about voting. Those last two features will also be offered in English and Spanish.

Lastly, new protections are also expected to be put in place for accounts that belong to candidates, government officials, and journalists. These protective features include “more sophisticated detection and alerts” to quicken Twitter’s response to “suspicious activity,” faster support for account recovery, and improved login protections.

Twitter is also reinstating a few preexisting misinformation-related features. Twitter users can expect to see the return of Prebunks and candidate account labels. Prebunks, if you’re not familiar, are prompts placed by Twitter in your timeline that will preemptively address certain topics with more accurate information in an effort to reduce misinformation. This time around, Prebunks will be offered “in English, Spanish, and all other languages supported on Twitter” and will be available via users’ timelines (for U.S. users) and “in Search when people type related terms, phrases, or hashtags.”

Candidate account labels began their return this year in May and they’ll be here to stay until the general election ends. You’ll see them on candidate accounts for candidates running for congressional seats or for governor. The labels will be seen on both candidates’ profile pages and their individual tweets.

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