Just as Elon Musk was working out details with Twitter, the company shared its policy on dealing with disinformation on climate change in Twitter advertising. The Earth Day announcement reaffirmed the company’s commitment to “people around the world use Twitter to connect with others passionate about protecting our planet.”
Specifically, wrote two officials, “misleading advertisements on Twitter that contradict the scientific consensus on climate change are prohibited, in line with our inappropriate content policy. We believe that climate denialism shouldn’t be monetized on Twitter, and that misrepresentative ads shouldn’t detract from important conversations about the climate crisis. This approach is informed by authoritative sources, like the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change Assessment Reports.”
Oddly enough, the company’s inappropriate content policy doesn’t say anything about “climate denialism” although it refers to “misrepresentative content.” Here’s what Twitter says it avoids (these are direct quotes):
- Dangerous or exploitative content
- Demeaning or inflammatory content
- Personal attacks
- Misrepresentative content
- Misleading synthetic or manipulated content
- Content engaged in coordinated harmful activity
- Distasteful content
- Profanity and vulgarity
- Content that refers to a sensitive event or topic (e.g. deaths, natural/industrial disasters, violent attacks, civil disorder, etc.) and contains any of the following: personal attacks, hashtag appropriation, the selling of goods/services, political campaigning, solicitation of followers, or other inappropriate content.
Hat tip to Ben Geman of Axios for alerting us to this announcement from two of Twitter’s “sustainability executives.”
So Twitter has “sustainability executives”? Perhaps not for long.