Twitter Forced to Update Fact Check of Trump After Some of it Turns Out to Be Wrong
Twitter on Tuesday was forced to update a fact check of President Donald Trump‘s vote-by-mail tweets after conflating the difference between vote-by-mail and absentee voting.
“There was an error in Twitter’s fact check of Trump’s vote-by-mail tweets, underscoring the challenge social media platforms face trying to arbitrate truth,” Wall Street Journal reporter Dustin Volz wrote on Twitter. “It was corrected after an elections professional notified the company (and me) about the mistake.”
The platform originally stated, “mail-in ballots are already used in some states, including Oregon, Utah and Nebraska.” The Journal noted, “That statement appears to conflate automatic all-mail voting with absentee ballots in regards to at least one state.” The difference? Nebraska mailed applications to every voter in response to the coronavirus pandemic but did not automatically send all voters ballots.
Twitter on Tuesday included a message on a tweet from the president calling mail-in balloting “substantially fraudulent.” That message led to a page on Twitter headlined, “Trump makes unsubstantiated claim that mail-in ballots will lead to voter fraud.” The platform had not published text advising readers of the update as of Wednesday but still included a claim about Nebraska, noting the state set a record for absentee voting this year.
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