Twitter allows Trump disinfectant videos, says they do not violate COVID-19 policy
By Elizabeth Culliford (Reuters) - Twitter Inc said on Friday that video clips of U.S. President Donald Trump suggesting scientists investigate inserting light or disinfectant into coronavirus patients did not violate its COVID-19 misinformation policy.
By Elizabeth Culliford
(Reuters) - Twitter Inc said on Friday that video clips of U.S. President Donald Trump suggesting scientists investigate inserting light or disinfectant into coronavirus patients did not violate its COVID-19 misinformation policy.
A Twitter spokeswoman told Reuters in an email that the company considered Trump's remarks a wish for a COVID-19 treatment, rather than a literal call for people to inject disinfectant.
The social media site exploded with discussion of the president's comments, made at his daily media briefing on Thursday, with such trending terms as "Lysol", "#disinfectant" and "DontDrinkBleach" and "#InjectDisinfectant."
Twitter previously said it was prioritizing the removal of COVID-19 misinformation that might cause harm but would not act on every tweet containing incomplete or disputed information about the disease.
The site's COVID-19 misinformation policy states that it has broadened its definition of harm to address content that goes against guidance from authoritative sources of public health information.
After Trump spoke, doctors and health experts urged people not to drink or inject cleaning agent. Lysol and Dettol maker Reckitt Benckiser warned against internal usage of disinfectants, saying it had been asked about it due to recent speculation and social media activity.
The White House said on Friday that Trump had been taken out of context and had urged people to seek coronavirus treatment only after conferring with their doctors. Its emailed statement did not directly mention cleaners or ultraviolet (UV) light as coronavirus treatments, but its subject was "White House on disinfectant."
Twitter's policy also says it bans descriptions of purported cures for COVID-19 which are ineffective or being shared with the intent to mislead others, even if made in jest.
A Reuters Twitter search turned up several tweets mocking Trump's suggestions by repeating exaggerated versions of them, including a joke meme saying, "Don't forget to drink your daily dose of bleach as advised by President Trump."
Trump, who has more than 73 million followers on Twitter and whose digital campaign helped propel him to the White House in 2016, has long complained without evidence that social media companies, including Twitter, employ tactics to silence conservative voices – accusations the companies deny.
In March, Twitter used its “manipulated media” label for the first time on a video clip of Joe Biden, the Republican Trump’s presumptive Democratic rival in the 2020 presidential election, which was posted by White House social media director Dan Scavino and retweeted by Trump.
Social media giant Facebook Inc and YouTube, the video service of Google-parent Alphabet, did not immediately respond to Reuters questions about their handling of clips of Trump's remarks or the discussions on their sites.
(Reporting by Elizabeth Culliford; Editing by Howard Goller)
This story has not been edited by Firstpost staff and is generated by auto-feed.
By Robin Emmott and John Irish | BRUSSELS/PARIS BRUSSELS/PARIS France and Germany will agree to a U.S. plan for NATO to take a bigger role in the fight against Islamic militants at a meeting with President Donald Trump on Thursday, but insist the move is purely symbolic, four senior European diplomats said.The decision to allow the North Atlantic Treaty Organization to join the coalition against Islamic State in Syria and Iraq follows weeks of pressure on the two allies, who are wary of NATO confronting Russia in Syria and of alienating Arab countries who see NATO as pushing a pro-Western agenda."NATO as an institution will join the coalition," said one senior diplomat involved in the discussions. "The question is whether this just a symbolic gesture to the United States
BEIJING Chinese President Xi Jinping on Wednesday called for greater efforts to make the country's navy a world class one, strong in operations on, below and above the surface, as it steps up its ability to project power far from its shores.China's navy has taken an increasingly prominent role in recent months, with a rising star admiral taking command, its first aircraft carrier sailing around self-ruled Taiwan and a new aircraft carrier launched last month.With President Donald Trump promising a US shipbuilding spree and unnerving Beijing with his unpredictable approach on hot button issues including Taiwan and the South and East China Seas, China is pushing to narrow the gap with the U.S. Navy.Inspecting navy headquarters, Xi said the navy should "aim for the top ranks in the world", the Defence Ministry said in a statement about his visit."Building a strong and modern navy is an important mark of a top ranking global military," the ministry paraphrased Xi as saying.