Twitter to Label Government & State-Affiliated Accounts

By | August 7, 2020

Apart from the normal verified mark we are used to, Twitter is about to add another label to state-affiliated accounts on its platform. Facebook and YouTube had previously done something like this and Twitter is following in the same line.

Twitter says the label will help users make decisions better. This would help create more awareness on Twitter, being able to identify various political accounts on Twitter would be a win for everyone.

twitter to label government and state-affiliated accounts

On Thursday the 6th of August, Twitter tweeted that the labels were already active in state-affiliated accounts associated with China, France, Russia, Britain, and the U.S. Twitter also said it plans to expand the feature to other countries with time stating that the aim is to assist users in making decisions about what they see from these accounts and how they react to it.

What the Labels Will Look Like

The label will define which country the account is associated with and whether it’s a Government account or a state-affiliated account. A small icon of a flag would mean it’s a Government account, while a podium would mean it’s a state-affiliated account.

Some of the accounts that would be getting a flag would include ambassadors, foreign ministers, official spokespeople, and diplomatic leaders. Accounts with podiums will definitely be state-related accounts as well as their editors in chief and their senior staff.

twitter labeled government account

Twitter isn’t going to be labeling the personal accounts for heads of state or personal accounts of big-time politicians giving solid reasons that these accounts already have “widespread name recognition, media attention and public awareness”.

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Also, while media organizations “where the states exercises control over editorial content through financial resources, political pressure or control over production and distribution” will get labeled, publicly funded, or operated media organizations with editorial independence will not be labeled.

In simple words, media organizations that are being controlled by the Government one way or the other will get labeled by Twitter and Independent media organizations won’t.

Furthermore, Twitter said that it will no longer “amplify” tweets by state-affiliated accounts “including on the home timeline, notifications and search”. It won’t change such accounts visibility if someone follows them but it will greatly affect the number of people who view its tweets.

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