Twitter expands 'manipulated media' label policy after uproar over Biden clip

Twitter will now add labels to quote tweets that share manipulated media

Twitter said Monday that it has expanded its "manipulated media" label policy, and the changes should be deployed to all users by the end of Tuesday.

The announcement comes after two high-profile Twitter users shared altered video clips featuring 2020 Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden as the website prepares to combat misinformation nearly two months ahead of the Nov. 3 election.

Twitter referred FOX Business to a tweet from their product lead, Kayvon Beykpour, when asked about the policy change.

Beykpour said the update would be deployed Tuesday in a Monday reply tweet to Buzzfeed tech reporter Ryan Mac, who pointed out that when users quote-tweet certain posts that have "manipulated media" labels, the label disappears.

"Hey Ryan, this is definitely a gap in implementation," Beykpour said. "It's been on our radar and there were some gnarly technical details that made it take longer to solve than we liked. The fix for it is actually rolling out today & should be deployed to 100 [percent] of users by the end of the day."

Twitter told Politico that the policy update would eventually expand onto tweets shown on its dashboard platform, TweetDeck.

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White House Deputy Chief of Staff for Communications and Director of Social Media Dan Scavino on Sunday tweeted out a doctored video of Biden to make it appear as though the presidential nominee were sleeping during a live TV interview.

House Minority Whip Steve Scalise on Monday tweeted out a doctored video clip featuring Ady Barkan, a liberal activist with ALS, interviewing Biden. Scalise has since deleted the tweet.

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Barkan tweeted at Scalise on Monday saying the Louisiana Republican owes "the entire disability community an apology."

"These are not my words. I have lost my ability to speak, but not my agency or my thoughts. You and your team have doctored my words for your own political gain. Please remove this video immediately. You owe the entire disability community an apology," Barkan said.

Biden retweeted Barkan's comment saying the doctored video was "a flagrant attempt to spread misinformation at the expense of a man who uses assistive technology."

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Twitter's manipulated media policy defines manipulated media as content that has been "substantially edited in a manner that fundamentally alters its composition, sequence, timing, or framing"; content that has been edited to remove or alter audio; and content that depicts deepfakes, or a simulated person that appears to be real.

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The policy states that users "may not deceptively promote synthetic or manipulated media that are likely to cause harm. In addition, [Twitter] may label Tweets containing synthetic and manipulated media to help people understand their authenticity and to provide additional context."

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