TWITTER TAKES ACTION ON ANTI-VAXXERS:
Twitter has launched a new tool to combat vaccine misinformation on its platform following intense scrutiny from public health advocates and lawmakers over social media’s role in amplifying debunked conspiracy theories.
When Twitter users search “vaccines” or related terms, they will now receive a message with a link to the Department of Health and Human Services’s (HHS) website about vaccines.
“To make sure you get the best information on vaccinations, resources are available from the US Department of Health & Human Services,” the pop-up says with a link to vaccines.gov and the HHS Twitter handle.
“We recently launched a new tool so when someone searches for certain keywords associated with vaccines, a prompt will direct individuals to a credible public health resource,” Del Harvey, Twitter’s vice president of trust and safety, said in a blog post last Friday.
The social media giant also will no longer auto-suggest searches that “are likely to direct individuals to non-credible commentary and information about vaccines,” according to the blog post.
A change of heart: A Twitter spokesperson told The Hill in February that “Twitter’s open and real-time nature is a powerful antidote to the spreading of all types of false information.”
“We, as a company, should not be the arbiter of truth,” the spokesperson said at the time.