All Misinformation stories

Jul 28, 2020 - Politics & Policy

Twitter temporarily bars Donald Trump Jr. from tweeting over coronavirus misinformation

Photo: Andy Cross/MediaNews Group/The Denver Post via Getty Images

Twitter temporarily prevented Donald Trump Jr. from tweeting and retweeting on Tuesday after the president's son shared coronavirus-related misinformation.

Why it matters: The 12-hour hold — set off by a video touting hydroxychloroquine — is one of the toughest moves yet against a member of the Trump inner circle by the social media platform.

Jul 21, 2020 - Technology

Facebook adds label to Trump post on elections

Photo Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios. Photo: Saul Loeb/AFP via Getty Images

Facebook Tuesday added a label — directing users to electoral information — to a post by President Donald Trump that criticizes mail-in voting.

Why it matters: The move follows through on a promise by Facebook to label all posts from political candidates that mention voting. The company wants to show it will apply the new rules equally to everyone, including Trump. It has added similar links to posts from Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden.

Bryan Walsh, author of Future
Jul 18, 2020 - Technology

Tweeting our way to a nuclear war

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

A new report outlines how miscalculations and misinformation on Twitter could lead to global war.

Why it matters: Social media platforms like Twitter have vastly accelerated the pace of communication. Without restraints, it's far too easy to imagine how errant tweets could cause international disputes to escalate out of control.

Jul 14, 2020 - Economy & Business

Project Origin is watermarking media to fight fake news ahead of the election

Illustration: Caresse Haaser, Rebecca Zisser/Axios

An international coalition of news and tech companies, including the AP, The Washington Post, Facebook and others, is partnering with a different coalition led by the BBC, CBC/Radio-Canada, Microsoft and The New York Times called Project Origin to fight fake news during the U.S. election.

How it works: The project aims to place digital watermarks on media originating from authentic content creators. The watermark will degrade when content has been manipulated. The verification system will be deployed in the month leading up to the U.S. election.

Jul 13, 2020 - Technology

Online conspiracy theory links child trafficking to Wayfair furniture sales

Photo: Rafael Henrique/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Platforms including Reddit, Twitter, Facebook and YouTube have been playing host to a baseless conspiracy theory that picked up steam over the weekend claiming that furniture e-tailer Wayfair is a front for human trafficking.

Why it matters: The claims caught fire among QAnon, the online group that believes President Trump is fighting a secret war against deep-state pedophiles. Since beginning in 2017, QAnon has moved slowly toward mainstream notice, and a number of supporters of the fringe belief system are now running for Congress.

Facebook bans accounts linked to Roger Stone and far-right Proud Boys

Photo: Drew Angerer/Getty Images

Facebook announced Wednesday it removed nearly 100 social media accounts and pages with links to Trump associate Roger Stone and the Proud Boys, a far-right group, for posting misinformation.

Why it matters: Facebook began looking into the accounts as part of an investigation into the Proud Boys' attempt to return to Facebook following a 2018 ban. The accounts posed as Florida residents and shared misinformation about local politics, land and water resource bills as well as misinformation about Stone's trial, books and media appearances.

Jul 8, 2020 - Podcasts

The misinformation virus

The spread of misinformation is crippling our fight against the coronavirus. Social media and a deeply partisan divide are fueling what the World Health Organization calls an "infodemic" — just as urgent as the virus itself.

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Jul 1, 2020 - Technology

Facebook oversight board urged to tackle climate "loophole"

Illustration: Rebecca Zisser/Axios

Prominent environmentalists and Democratic activists say Facebook is "allowing the spread of climate misinformation to flourish, unchecked" and urging the company's external oversight board to intervene.

Driving the news: A new open letter with signatories including Stacey Abrams, John Podesta and Tom Steyer takes aim at distribution of content from a group called the CO2 Coalition without warning labels or restrictions.

Ina Fried, author of Login
Jun 29, 2020 - Technology

Scoop: Microsoft has been pausing spending on Facebook, Instagram

Microsoft CMO Chris Capossela. Photo: Microsoft

Microsoft suspended its advertising on Facebook and Instagram in the U.S. in May and recently expanded that to a global pause, according to an internal chat transcript seen by Axios.

Between the lines: Unlike the many advertisers who recently joined a Facebook boycott, Microsoft is concerned about where its ads are shown, not Facebook's policies. But the move still means yet another big advertiser is not spending on Facebook right now.

Twitter labels Trump tweet of "racist baby" as manipulated media

Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios

Twitter labeled a video posted by President Trump of a black toddler and a white toddler — edited with a fake chyron that read "terrified todler runs from racist baby" — as "manipulated media" on Thursday night.

Why it matters, via Axios' Ina Fried: Although Twitter's label on the tweet is weaker than two other recent moves, it is sure to irk the president, who has already criticized Twitter and issued an executive order seeking to limit the legal shield protecting social media companies.