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Twitter Executives to Meet Senate Committee on Russia

Twitter executives would speak about the prevalence of bot accounts, as well as the widespread dissemination of fake news and misinformation, on its platform.


Updated:September 22, 2017, 10:49 AM IST
Twitter Executives to Meet Senate Committee on Russia
(Representative Image. Image: AFP PHOTO / DAMIEN MEYER)
Twitter executives will meet with the Senate Intelligence Committee which is investigating alleged Russian collusion in the 2016 presidential elections next week, the micro-blogging platform announced. The executives would speak about the prevalence of bot accounts, as well as the widespread dissemination of fake news and misinformation, on its platform, The Wired reported on Wednesday. "Twitter engages with governments around the world on public policy issues of importance and of interest to policymakers. We are cooperating with the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence in its inquiry into the 2016 election and will meet with committee staff next week," a Twitter spokesperson was quoted as saying.

"Twitter deeply respects the integrity of the election process, a cornerstone of all democracies, and will continue to strengthen our platform against bots and other forms of manipulation that violate our Terms of Service." Twitter's confirmation follows the comments of Democratic Senator and Committee Vice-Chair Mark Warner who on Wednesday told CNN that they do not have any evidence that Russian operatives had help from Americans yet. "That's one of the reasons why we want to hear from Facebook. We're going to hear from Twitter next week," he said. Twitter is just one of many tech platforms facing a barrage of questions about how bad actors-both foreign and domestic-may have used social media and digital ads to influence American voters.

Earlier this month, Facebook revealed it had found $150,000 in ads, linked to Russian accounts, that targeted US voters. Facebook has shared more information about those ad buys. Google also faced scrutiny during the election when reports of fake news being run on platform surfaced. It was revealed that that fake news sites being run largely out of Macedonia were profiting from Google Ads displayed alongside their stories. Google later removed many of those sites from its ad platform, the report noted.

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