NEWS4 November 2020

Social networks add warnings to Trump false victory claims

News North America US Election

US – With the winner of the US presidential election yet to be announced and a large number of votes still being counted, Facebook and Twitter have flagged social media posts by Donald Trump prematurely claiming victory.

Facebook Twitter_cop

In a speech live-streamed on both social platforms, Trump falsely claimed that he had won the presidency despite the vote counting process continuing in several key swing states.

Trump also made baseless claims about ‘fraud’ during the speech and said he would launch a Supreme Court challenge. It was not clear on what grounds he intended to bring a legal challenge.

Facebook added a warning label to the video of the speech that read: “Final results may be different from the initial vote counts, as ballot counting will continue for days or weeks after votes close.” The label also included a link to a page of information about the election process.

The social network also placed a label on a post from Joe Biden, to note that votes are still being counted and the winner of the election has not been projected.

Twitter also added a warning to a tweet from Trump, informing users that: “Some or all of the content shared in this Tweet is disputed and might be misleading about an election or other civic process.” In order to see the tweet, users have to click through from the warning.

However, a video of Trump’s speech was showing without any warnings on the official Trump campaign Twitter feed.

The labels are part of policies put in place by both Facebook and Twitter prior to the election to address the spread of misinformation.

Twitter said in September that as well as labelling misleading information, it would remove any tweets calling for violence or interference with the election. 

US election officials are still counting ballots in several states, and that process could continue for days. This year’s election saw a record number of postal votes due in part to Covid-19. 

At the time of writing, the swing states of Georgia, Wisconsin, North Carolina, Michigan and Pennsylvania were yet to declare.