Twitter | A rumor shared by Elon Musk raises fears of a resurgence of misinformation

(Washington) Elon Musk on Sunday echoed a rumor about the assault of the husband of congressional Democrat leader Nancy Pelosi as his recent acquisition of the platform raises fears of a resurgence of misinformation about the application .

Posted October 30

“There is a small possibility that appearances are deceiving,” the billionaire tweeted referring to the attack on Paul Pelosi, and referring to a link to the conservative site Santa Monica Observer, which spread unverified information about the offensive.

This media has already published conspiracy theories and false information in the past, according to the daily Los Angeles Times.

Paul Pelosi was attacked at his home on Friday by a man with a hammer, who was actually looking for Nancy Pelosi. He suffered in particular from a fractured skull and had to be hospitalized.

Elon Musk was reacting to a tweet from former Democratic presidential candidate Hillary Clinton castigating conspiracy theories promoted by the Republican Party.

“The Republican Party and its spokespersons now regularly propagate hate speech and completely crazy conspiracy theories,” criticized the former US secretary of state. “It’s shocking but not surprising, and violence is the result.”

Elon Musk’s tweet sparked a number of comments.

“Clinton: Conspiracy theories are responsible for people’s deaths and we shouldn’t give them visibility. Twitter owner: But have you heard of this conspiracy theory? “, summed up Seth Masket, professor of political science at the University of Denver, who reported Elon Musk’s tweet as inappropriate to the social network.

The whimsical boss of Tesla and SpaceX, who presents himself as the cantor of freedom of expression, has repeatedly affirmed that he wants to make Twitter a kind of digital agora, where all opinions are free to express themselves.

However, seeking to reassure his advertisers, Elon Musk promised after his acquisition of Twitter that he would provide the platform with a “content moderation council”.

A few days after its acquisition, the network is the subject of coordinated attacks by “trolls” dumping hateful content, according to a Twitter official.

“Over the past 48 hours, we’ve seen a small number of accounts post a flurry of tweets containing slurs and other offensive language,” Yoel Roth, the platform’s integrity manager, said on Saturday.

“To give you an idea of ​​the scale: more than 50,000 tweets mentioning a particular insult came from just 300 accounts,” he added, specifying that the vast majority were fake accounts.

Mr Roth reiterated that “hate speech had no place” on Twitter as its moderation policy had not “changed”, and that the company was taking steps to “stop any organized effort to make people believe the opposite “.

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