Twitter is considering a new policy that would label tweets from politicians - including President Trump - when they violate the company's (admittedly nebulous) community standards policy. Put another way, the platform, which has been exposed for discriminating against and shadow-banning conservative voices, is now planning to publicly shame politicians who express conservative views.
Vijaya Gadde, Twitter's head of legal, policy, and trust and safety, who famously appeared alongside CEO Jack Dorsey during an interview with journalist Tim Pool on Joe Rogan's podcast last month, said during a Washington Post event on Wednesday that the company might start adding messages to these tweets to explain why they haven't been removed from the platform, according to the Hill.
Twitter has long held that some posts from public figures should remain up because they are "newsworthy," even when they violate Twitter guidelines.
"One of the things we’re working really closely on with our product and engineering folks is, 'How can we label that?'" Gadde said during the Post event.
“How can we put some context around it so people are aware that that content is actually a violation of our rules and it is serving a particular purpose in remaining on the platform?"
Gadde mentioned the policy, which is under consideration, during a response to a question about whether Trump can say whatever he wants on Twitter. As it stands, Twitter's public policy states that tweets from politicians are "important" to public debate.
"When we leave that content on the platform there’s no context around that and it just lives on Twitter and people can see it and they just assume that is the type of content or behavior that’s allowed by our rules," Gadde said.
However, Gadde added that the platform's "newsworthiness" policy doesn't offer blanket protection to all tweets from public figures. Violent threats (and, presumably, deadnaming a trans person) would be an exception.
"An example would be a direct violent threat against an individual that we wouldn't leave on the platform because of the danger it poses to that individual," Gadde said.
"But there are other types of content that we believe are newsworthy or in the public interest that people may want to have a conversation around," she added.
We look forward to hearing Twitter's explanation about why they applied their new scarlet letter to all of the president's tweets about the migrant crisis at the southern border