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Twitter Adds New Prompts to Alert Users Before Sharing Any Tweet Flagged for Misinformation

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Twitter has added another warning prompt to slow the spread of misinformation, this time alerting users when they go to share a tweet which has been flagged under the platform’s rules against misinformation.

Twitter disputed info label

As you can see here, the prompt will alert the user looking to retweet or quote tweet that the claim included in the original message is in dispute, and link them through to more information.

As explained by Twitter:

Our work to limit the spread of misleading information goes beyond elections. Starting today, before you Retweet or Quote Tweet any labeled Tweet that breaks our misleading information rules, you’ll see a prompt.”

The added friction in the tweet process could help to slow people from amplifying false claims – Twitter has also added similar for tweets where the re-tweeter hasn’t opened the attached article, while it’s also removed the straight retweet option entirely for US users in the lead up to the US election.

Twitter election update

You can still re-tweet by not entering anything into the ‘Quote Tweet’ composer window, but the idea is that by prompting users to add their own thoughts – or at the least, think about why they’re re-tweeting a message – it could reduce blind amplification of messages, and provide more nuance in debate.

And Twitter has already seen results from these new prompts. The platform recently reported that users are opening articles 40% more often when shown its new ‘read before retweeting’ message.

This latest update, as Twitter notes, will apply to all tweets tagged as containing misleading information, and that small bit of pushback could definitely make more people think twice about re-distributing such messages.

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Of course, many of the issues identified with Twitter amplifcation of such content in the past have related to the use of bots, with some reports suggesting that swarms of bot armies are used to amplify certain political messages, and influence the subsequent conversation.  

Twitter’s tackling this element as well, and in combination, these measures should reduce the influence of re-sharing of questionable claims in tweets, in all contexts, moving forward. 

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New Screenshots Highlight How Snapchat’s Coming ‘Family Center’ Will Work

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New Screenshots Highlight How Snapchat's Coming 'Family Center' Will Work

Snapchat’s parental control options look close to launch, with new screenshots based on back-end code showing how Snap’s coming ‘Family Center’ will look in the app.

As you can see in these images, shared by app intelligence company Watchful (via TechCrunch), the Family Center will enable parents to see who their child is engaging with in the app, along with who they’ve added, who they’re following, etc.

That could provide a new level of assurance for parents – though it could also be problematic for Snap, which has become a key resource for more private, intimate connection, with its anti-public posting ethos, and disappearing messages, helping to cement its place as an alternative to other social apps.

That’s really how Snap has embedded its niche. While other apps are about broadcasting your life to the wider world, Snap is about connecting with a small group of friends, where you can share your more private, secret thoughts, without concern of them living on forever, and coming back to bite you at a later stage.

That also, of course, means that more questionable, dangerous communications are happening in the app. Various reports have investigated how Snap is used for sending lewd messages, and arranging hook-ups, while drug dealers reportedly now use Snap to organize meet-ups and sales.

Which, of course, is why parents will be keen to get more insight into such, but I can’t imagine Snap users will be so welcoming of an intrusive tool in this respect.

But if parents know that it exists, they may have to, and that could be problematic for Snap. Teen users will need to accept their parents’ invitation to enable Family Center monitoring, but you can see how this could become an issue for many younger users in the app.

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Still, the protective benefits may well be worth it, with random hook-ups and other engagements posing significant risks. And with kids as young as 13 able to create a Snapchat account, there are many vulnerable youngsters engaging in the app.

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But it could reduce Snap’s appeal, as more parents become aware of the tool.

Snapchat hasn’t provided any further insight into the new Family Center, or when it will be released, but it looks close to launch based on these images.  

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