It is extremely easy to share whatever you want on social media. It is one of the reasons that fake news has become so prevalent in our time, with people simply passing something on to help it go viral. Twitter wants to stop the spread of misinformation by stopping people from simply retweeting and article without reading it.
Our natural inclination is to take the easy path (work smart, not hard), and while wanting to share relevant information with those we care about is noble, all of us have passed something along after simply reading a catchy headline. I wouldn’t call Twitter the platform for intelligent, rational conversation, but this is what they are trying to promote. If everyone is properly informed, these conversations can be much more effective.
Twitter has started to test a prompt that will appear if Twitter detects that you’ve not actually clicked on the source link to open the article, and are retweeting it after just seeing the preview in your feed.
On their official support account, Twitter said:
“Sharing an article can spark conversation, so you may want to read it before you Tweet it.
To help promote informed discussion, we’re testing a new prompt on Android –– when you Retweet an article that you haven’t opened on Twitter, we may ask if you’d like to open it first.”
According to Kavyon Beykpour, product lead at Twitter, “it’s easy for links/articles to go viral on Twitter. This can be powerful but sometimes dangerous, especially if people haven’t read the content they’re spreading.”
What do you think about these types of efforts to curb the flow of misinformation? Do you believe it is a big problem on social media? Let us know in the comments below.