If you’re a twitter user you know that it allows organizations to buy promoted tweet space, wherein a tweet of that organization’s choice is put onto a network of users’ feed and marked as “promoted.” Usually, you’ll see a brand like a Coca Cola promote a tweet with a link to an external site that, naturally, promotes their product. The concept is pretty straight forward.
This morning, a link to a promoted tweet made it into my time line that caught my attention. Here’s the tweet (trigger warning: violence, racism. H/T to @TheAngryFangirl for the screengrab). CNSNews is the company that paid for the promoted tweet, a Christian news organization that produces and posts anti-choice material. The tweet contains wildly misleading and inaccurate information and its violent language is triggering.
Does Twitter have standards or do they just take money from anyone? Should Twitter have standards, and what should they be?
Yes, Twitter should have some basic standards.The racist nature of the tweet should have disqualified it at the outset. If that didn’t ring some alarm bells, they should not promote patently false information that is deceptive and misleading. Basic decency asks why no one considered the tweet to be inappropriate or offensive.
I started a petition on Change.org asking Twitter to remove the offensive promoted tweet and update its promoted tweet policy to disallow racist content. Please sign and pass along.