How Big Tech is prepping for elections

The measures that Google, Facebook, and Twitter are taking to stop the spread of election-related misinformation.

October 28, 2020

With the US election less than a week away, here’s a roundup of how the major tech platforms are preparing for the potential spread of misinformation or worse.

Facebook may deploy emergency internal tools

According to the Wall Street Journal, Facebook is prepping tools that slow the spread of viral content and lower the bar for suppressing potential inflammatory content.

The tech firm used these measures in “at-risk” countries such as Sri Lanka and Myanmar, and will only roll them out in the US in “dire circumstances.”

As with all things Facebook, we don’t actually know what that means — and there is concern FB will suppress legitimate news.

Twitter added election-related banners

These banners pop up at the top of timelines for US users and any time there is a search related to the election.

The banners will note that:

  • voting by mail is safe and secure
  • election results may not be announced right away

Google is partnering with the Associated Press

Searches on Google properties (Assistant, smart speakers, YouTube) related to elections will bring up official and up-to-date information from the Associated Press.

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