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Twitter quarantines tweets from government officials

Twitter is now starting to quarantine tweets from government officials that violate the site's rules.

The social media website previously let public officials such as politicians tweet without restriction, but last week it was announced officials now face a new scheme in which any tweet that breaks Twitter's rules - including those prohibiting harassment and other hateful conduct - will either be removed from the platform entirely or quarantined behind a new wall which warns users about the content.

Twitter will remove tweets it believes are not in the public interest, whilst those it believes still need to be accessed by the public will be hidden behind "a screen you have to click or tap through before you see the Tweet."

Hidden tweets will have limited reach, and will tell people which of the rules have been broken.

A Twitter spokesperson said: "If a rule has been broken we want to make sure that we are reaching that decision as quickly as possible. We also want to make sure that it's the right call to make, because this is something that, as you can imagine, the very first time that we use it, it will garner a lot of attention."

In a blog post, Twitter gave an example of a notice over a tweet, which read: "The Twitter Rules about abusive behaviour apply to this Tweet. However, Twitter has determined that it may be in the public's interest for the Tweet to remain available. Learn more."

Currently, Twitter is only applying the new feature to accounts that are verified, have more than 100,000 followers, and "represent a government official, [are] running for public office, or [are] considered for a government position (i.e., next in line, awaiting confirmation, named successor to an appointed position)."

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