Social media giant Twitter has again appended warning labels on another controversial tweets posted by President Trump. In the tweets, Trump had suggested that voters who submitted their ballots by email to also go to their polling stations on Election Day to verify their votes and be counted.
“If it has not been Counted, VOTE (which is a citizen’s right to do),” the president had tweeted in one of a number of other tweets on Thursday morning.
The president also posted similar messages on Facebook. Facebook also slapped a notice beneath the post which reads: “voting by mail has a long history of trustworthiness in the US and the same is predicted this year, Facebook said, directing its users to its voting information center.
While Facebook’s move did not prevent users from viewing and reading the post, Twitter’s action prevented them unless they click through a dialogue warning that the tweet was a violation of its rules that have to do with civic and election integrity. Twitter, however, adds that it “may be in the public’s interest for the Tweet to remain accessible.”
In a statement, Twitter per CNBC said: “To protect people on Twitter, we err on the side of limiting the circulation of Tweets which advise people to take actions which could be illegal in the context of voting or result in the invalidation of their votes.”
In June, Twitter labeled another tweet posted by Trump, which the social media giant claimed violated its “rules about abusive behavior.” Despite adjudging the tweet to be “abusive,” the microblogging company failed to apply the hammer—claiming “that it may be in the public’s interest for the tweet to remain accessible.”
A statement from Twitter Safety account explaining the reason for the action reads: “We’ve placed a public interest notice on this Tweet for violating our policy against abusive behavior, specifically, the presence of a threat of harm against an identifiable group.”
While restricted tweets can be retweeted with a comment, they, however, cannot be liked or replied to. For me, this is just a symbolic action taken by Twitter since the restriction does not in any way reduce the number of people that can see it considering Trump’s huge followership on Twitter.
That said, the decision to label it is in itself a strong statement from the microblogging platform, and shows that it [Twitter] is not afraid to apply the rule even though not as strict as many would have wanted. A week before that, Twitter tagged one of President Trump’s video tweet as “manipulated media.”