News 26 January 2021

Twitter Launches ‘Birdwatch’ Feature To Crack Down On Misinformation

26 January 2021

In a bid to tackle misinformation on its platform, Twitter is now piloting a new feature named Birdwatch.

The feature – which is currently being used as a pilot programme in the States – allows users to flag and annotate misleading or incorrect information.

“Birdwatch allows people to identify information in Tweets they believe is misleading or false, and write notes that provide informative context,” Twitter’s Vice President of Product Keith Coleman wrote in a blog post.

“We believe this approach has the potential to respond quickly when misleading information spreads, adding context that people trust and find valuable.” 

Birdwatch can be found on Twitter’s separate site, where users with an account containing a real email address and phone number can create posts to highlight misinformation.

At current, the notes made will only be visible to people within the pilot group, but the company hopes the annotations can exist to Twitter’s global audience when “there is consensus from a broad and diverse set of contributors”.

Coleman admitted there are a “number of challenges toward building a community-driven system” such as Birdwatch, but added it’s a “model worth trying.”