Twitter Ends COVID Misinformation Policy

    Photo: Bloomberg/Getty Images [via Axios]

    The Facts

    • Twitter has announced an end to its policy regulating COVID misinformation — rules developed in 2020 to prohibit disputed information about the virus and vaccines from the platform. The change was made in a note added to the policy saying, “Effective November 23, 2022, Twitter is no longer enforcing the COVID-19 misleading information policy.”

    • The policy, which took effect in March 2020, took down posts that contradicted "authoritative sources," and later augmented to prioritize the "removal of the most harmful, misleading information" about COVID vaccines.

    The Spin

    Establishment-critical narrative

    Musk believes in free speech, which means he believes in the right to question and debate so-called "authoritative sources." The US government and Big Tech policies related to COVID were arbitrary. On Twitter, users were suspended for spreading any information that wasn’t blessed by the establishment. This is a win for freedom of speech.

    Pro-establishment narrative

    Allowing disinformation isn't promoting free speech, it's hindering the public's ability to receive life-saving medical advice. Under Twitter's previous policy, experts were able to flag harmful speech and protect the uninformed from dangerous disinformation. Under Musk's new policy, and amid another rise in COVID cases, those safeguards will be gone, and the public square will flood with harmful public health recommendations.

    Establishment split



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