Twitter Moderators Knew the ‘Russian Bots’ List Was Fake: Twitter Files

Twitter content moderators knew that a “Russian bots list” used by mainstream media to discredit unwelcome political viewpoints was fake, but ultimately remained silent on it due to fears of bad press, according to newly unveiled internal email exchanges.

Independent journalist Matt Taibbi on Friday released the latest installment of revelations dubbed the “Twitter Files.” This new batch of internal communications involved the Alliance for Securing Democracy (ASD), a nonprofit organization that studies strategies to counter campaigns to “undermine democratic processes” across the world.

ASD also created and maintains “Hamilton 68,” a dashboard that tracks, among other things, 600 Twitter accounts alleged to be Russian government-controlled bots. This online tool received positive mainstream media coverage, including from PoliticoThe Washington Post, and CNN.

In screenshots of emails shared by Taibbi, Twitter’s former head of Trust and Safety Yoel Roth appeared to have dismissed Hamilton 68’s list of Russian bots as untrustworthy.

In a January 2018 email, Roth lamented Hamilton 68’s accusing an organically trending political hashtag of being driven by Russian bots. He also talked about potentially calling out such behavior.

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Author: HP McLovincraft

Seeker of rabbit holes. Pessimist. Libertine. Contrarian. Your huckleberry. Possibly true tales of sanity-blasting horror also known as abject reality. Prepare yourself. Veteran of a thousand psychic wars. I have seen the fnords. Deplatformed on Tumblr and Twitter.

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