Twitter is still in the middle of answering piles of tough questions from the Senate Intelligence Committee regarding its contribution in spreading misinformation during last year's US presidential election. The accounts, allegedly used by Russian operatives sent out tweets intended to stoke outrage, incite social chaos, and split voters along racial lines which were suspected to have had effects on the election results.
Three Twitter accounts for the Russian news outlet RT were digged out by investigators and that these account were used to buy ads on the platform to promote tweets which targeted the US market. These charges are related to the recent discovery that Russian operatives had purchased ads on Facebook also and targeted voters through their social media profiles.
In certain measures Twitter has responded to that, its public policy VP Colin Crowell met the Senate Intelligence Committee behind closed doors after it had shut down over 200 accounts. Meanwhile, after the meeting, Sen. Mark Warner -- a Democrat from Virginia who serves as the Committee's vice chairman said, as reported by NBC News that Twitter's response was "inadequate on almost every level." Twitter and Facebook executives will testify further at an open hearing regarding the Russian investigation on Nov. 1.
This process is likely going to be a hard for Twitter as it is still struggling to keep up with its user base. Critics also claim that Twitter's hands-off approach to President Trump's freewheeling account is reckless and endangers national security.
Twitter is constantly accused of exacerbating the spread of fake news, enabling cyberbullies to anonymously attack their victims, and helping terrorist groups recruit members.
Nevertheless, Twitter suspended nearly a million terror-related accounts over the past two years, and added anti-abuse measures to counter cyber bullies. This could be seen as credit but it’s refusal to ban fake and bot accounts, claiming that they're useful marketing tools, despite the fact that grey market vendors sell thousands of bot accounts to users who want to amplify their social profiles still stands as an impediment to public clarity. As a result, the University of Southern California and Indiana University did a study that concludes that up to 15% of Twitter's active users are likely bots
OPTIONS ON THE TABLE
There are likely a couple of options on the coffee table to explore. Twitter could follow the Chinese system, where users on big social media platforms are required by law to register their real names, government-issued IDs, and phone numbers to open an account, like Weibo and Tencent's WeChat.
This approach would aid purging a lot of fake accounts, but certainly its con; it would cause Twitter's monthly active users to plummet and cause a massive Public Relations backlash regarding censorship, free speech, and privacy rights.
Meanwhile, Leo Sun suggests a softer approach; to team up with an AI specialist like IBM, which it already holds an analytics partnership with, to identify and filter fake news. However, automating that