US Elections’ counting is going on and it is a pretty crucial time for social media platforms. And to stop misinformation Twitter and Facebook had followed the strict rules. As the results are near the role of both social platforms is becoming extremely sensitive.
The United States is witnessing the head-to-head battle between Trump and Joe Biden but what makes it even more exciting is the ballyhoo on social media. Both Twitter and Facebook have added uncountable labels to Trump’s posts and still, it is under folds how many more they have to add till the final result will come. Voting counting of important states like Pennsylvania and Wisconsin was pending and Trump was claiming the false notification on social media. Donal Trump claimed that Democrats were initiating to steal the election. But the notable thing is that why Trump is in a hurry when the voting counting process is still in progress.
Not just Trump, his White House press secretary, Kayleigh McEnany too got some of her Tweets labelled when she followed the footsteps of Trump. If that was not enough, Trump declared a “big win” on Twitter even the counting in many key states were on.
On the other hand, Democrats had suggested Twitter suspend Trump’s Twitter account until the final results arrive. “Right now, the President’s Twitter account is posting lies and misinformation at a breathtaking clip, It is a threat to our democracy and should be suspended until all the votes are counted.” US House candidate David Cicilline wrote on Twitter.
This happened after Trump in a fresh tweet alleged that the Democrats have fixed the election to make Joe Biden, the winner. “Last night I was leading, often solidly, in many key States, in almost all instances Democrat-run & controlled. Then, one by one, they started to magically disappear as surprise ballot dumps were counted. VERY STRANGE, and the ‘pollsters’ got it completely & historically wrong!” Trump claimed. However, this tweet too was labelled by Twitter.
Although Twitter is having a tough time dealing with Trump’s misleading tweets, it is unlikely to go ahead and suspend Trump’s Twitter account. As that would lead to more chaotic situations on social media as well as on the streets of the United States of America.
While Twitter has been more brazen in labeling Trump’s tweets, Facebook dealt with it more subtly. Twitter added labels to Trump’s misleading but Facebook only added a notification to his posts saying that counting is still underway. Facebook also directed users to its election information centre. This is because Facebook co-founder Mark Zuckerberg had once said that he has no plans to fact-check the president of America because he believes in free speech. However, the social media giant assures that they would continue to remain vigilant till the results are announced.
“Our work isn’t done — we’ll stay vigilant and promote reliable information on Facebook as votes continue to be counted,” Facebook was quoted by the New York Times as saying.
Twitter on the other hand maintained that it would take action on tweets that prematurely declare victory.“As votes are still being counted across the country, our teams continue to take enforcement action on tweets that prematurely declare victory or contain misleading information about the election broadly,” Twitter told the NY.
Now, YouTube which is not as commonly used as Twitter or Facebook too faced problems with several channels live streaming misleading vote results. All the election videos on YouTube came with a label that said that the election results are not announced yet.
However, the drill does not end for social media sites even after the election results are announced because the platforms will be used again for claims and counterclaims, that could give rise to mass hysteria.
Fadi Quran, campaign director at Avaaz, a nonprofit organisation that tracks misinformation, said that the social media sites need to be more attentive. “Platforms need to quickly expand their efforts before the country is plunged into further chaos and confusion. It is a democratic emergency,” he told NY Times.