Senator Ed Markey is demanding answers from Twitter chief Elon Musk after he said a Washington Post reporter created a fake account in his name.
The reporter apparently managed to get the handle @realedmarkey, with Twitter noting that the account was verified as belonging to a “notable government person”.
“A @washingtonpost reporter was able to create a verified account impersonating me – I demand answers from @elonmusk who puts profits before people and his debt rather than stopping misinformation. Twitter needs to explain how this happened and how to prevent it from happening again,” Markey tweeted on Friday.
The Massachusetts Democrat wrote in a letter to the SpaceX founder demanding that the company explain the procedures in place for its “blue check” verification process.
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The Commerce, Science and Transport Committee member denounced Twitter’s “lax verification practices and apparent need for money” and noted that he had already verified his real account. under the handle @SenMarkey.
Recent changes, Markey claimed, undermine users’ ability to be critical consumers of news and information on the platform and risk spreading misinformation.
“Safeguards like Twitter’s blue checkmark once empowered users to be intelligent and critical consumers of news and information in Twitter’s global public square,” the senator wrote. “But your takeover of Twitter, the rapid and random imposition of platform changes, the removal of safeguards against misinformation, and the firing of large numbers of Twitter employees hastened Twitter’s descent into the world. Wild West of social media. This is unacceptable. Twitter and its leaders have a responsibility to the public to ensure that the platform does not become a breeding ground for manipulation and deception.”
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Markey’s questions to Musk – following the social media platform’s termination of Twitter Blue – include the process for issuing verification on an account “notable in government, news, entertainment or a other designated category”, the process for issuing verification, how these processes differ from the previous verification process, how Twitter’s system allows a reporter to obtain verification for a fake account, and whether they plan to reintroduce a verification system.
He’s not the only one with similar concerns, as countless other personalities and companies have been profiled by users who have purchased Twitter Blue accounts.
Yoel Roth – head of trust and safety at Twitter – resigned on Thursday.
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Musk has previously tweeted that he wants Twitter to become the world’s most accurate source of news.
Fox Business’ request for comment to Twitter was not immediately returned.
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