Twitter has for the very first time applied a new “Manipulated Media” label to a tweet containing an edited video of presidential candidate Joe Biden.
As Politico reports, the video was tweeted out by Dan Scavino, White House social media director, on Saturday and subsequently viewed over five million times. It shows Joe Biden saying, “We cannot win this re-election, excuse me, we can only re-elect Donald Trump.” President Trump shared the video twice, in one tweet stating “I agree with Joe!”
Anyone who watched the original video on YouTube will know Scavino was sharing an edited version. Biden’s statement in full is, “We can only re-elect Donald Trump if, in fact, we get engaged in this circular firing squad here … It’s got to be a positive campaign, so join us.” Twitter classes the tweeted video as having been significantly altered and so applied the Manipulated Media to the tweet.
Twitter asked for help last year deciding on its manipulated media policy. The final version of that policy came into effect on March 5 and now we’re seeing it in action.
The same video has appeared on Facebook with no such label applied. Greg Shultz, campaign manager for Joe Biden, responded with the statement below as shared by CNN reporter Sarah Mucha in a tweet:
“We live in an era of increasingly rampant disinformation, and there are only two ways to address this toxic force that is corroding our democracy: responsibly and in a way that serves the public, or irresponsibly and in a nakedly self-serving manner. Facebook’s malfeasance when it comes to trafficking in blatantly false misinformation is a national crisis in this respect. It is also an unconscionable act of putting profit above not just our country, but every country. Facebook won’t say it, but it is apparent to all who have examined their conduct and policies: they care first and foremost about money and, to that end, are willing to serve as one of the world’s most effective mediums for the spread of vile lies. That is repugnant, and it should be called out for what it is. Their unethical behavior is not acceptable, and it must change.”