Republicans in Congress are using a policy Twitter announced last month to continue their complaint that there is a bias against conservatives in Silicon Valley.
The bad faith argument started yesterday when the Republican House Judiciary Committee’s Twitter account claimed that Twitter “slapped a warning label” on a Sean Hannity article about the Hunter Biden email drama.
The only problem? It isn’t a warning label.
The tweet has a message that says “headlines don’t tell the full story. You can read the article on Twitter before retweeting.” That message is part of a policy the tech company said last month would be coming to all users as a way to “help promote informed discussion.”
Apparently the House Judiciary Committee didn’t care about this bit of information, and instead used the harmless prompt asking people to read an article before sharing it as a way to continue its attempts to label social media companies as biased.
“We tried to retweet @seanhannity’s article about @Jim_Jordan confirming the authenticity of Hunter Biden’s emails. But Twitter slapped a warning label on the tweet before we could do it. Wow,” the House Judiciary Committee GOP account tweeted on Wednesday.
The headline on the Hannity article read: “BREAKING: Jim Jordan Says Staff Has ‘Independently Confirmed’ the Hunter Biden Emails ‘Are Authentic.’”
Other Republican lawmakers also jumped at the chance to bash Twitter over the prompt asking people to read a story before retweeting it.
The National Republican Senatorial Committee also tweeted about the headline prompt, saying that the tech company was “censoring” inks to WinRed, a donation website. Twitter responded by noting that they are suggesting people read articles before retweeting them.
People were also quick to point out that other articles also have the same prompt.
The FCC announced it would move forward with President Donald Trump’s controversial social media executive order that targets Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, and the Senate Judiciary Committee voted to subpoena Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg to testify.
Given that the policy was officially rolled out last month and had been being tested since June, Twitter jumped in to set the record straight with the Republican House Judiciary Committee’s tweet, as it had to with the Senate tweet as well.
“We’re doing this to encourage everyone to read news articles before Tweeting them, regardless of the publication or the article. If you want to Retweet or Quote Tweet it, literally just click once more,” Twitter’s communications team tweeted.
The House Judiciary GOP Twitter account hasn’t clarified anything as of Thursday morning, but it seems unlikely they will.