Twitter will label and reduce the visibility of tweets linked to Russian state media | The mighty 790 KFGO

By Elizabeth Culliford

(Reuters) – Twitter is adding tags and reducing the visibility of tweets containing content from Russian state-affiliated media websites like RT and Sputnik, the social media company said on Monday.

He said since Russia invaded Ukraine on Thursday, it had seen more than 45,000 tweets a day from people sharing those links. Twitter said that meant the majority of state-affiliated media content came from individuals sharing the material rather than the state-affiliated media accounts it already labels.

State-run media, which has long been a contentious presence on major social platforms, has become a key battleground in Moscow’s clash with big tech companies during the Ukraine crisis.

Last week, Russia said it would partially restrict Facebook for censorship of its media, a move the company said came after it refused a request from Russian authorities to stop independent fact-checks and labels. on the content of certain public media.

Twitter, which has faced punitive site slowdowns from Russia, said on Saturday its site was restricted for users in the country.

Google and Meta, owner of Alphabet Inc, have also banned Russian state-controlled media from making money from ads on their platforms.

Twitter said the label would be automatically applied to all tweets with a URL from a state-affiliated designated media website. It will also reduce the visibility of these tweets by not recommending them to users and removing them from the “Top Search” function.

The company began labeling and “de-amplifying” state-affiliated accounts owned by Russia and several other countries in 2020. It stopped allowing advertising of accounts held by RT and Sputnik in 2017 after the US presidential election and in 2019 it banned advertisements from all state-supported media outlets.

Twitter said it was starting to add the new tags to tweets related to content from Russian state media, but intended to add other state-backed media from other countries in the coming weeks.

(Reporting by Elizabeth Culliford; Editing by Nick Zieminski)

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