Twitter has added a “Know the Facts” feature to guide users to accurate information about monkeypox, or MPV.
The panel takes users to information from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It comes up when anyone uses “monkeypox” or “MPV” as a search term. Twitter added it after GLAAD reached out, according to the LGBTQ+ rights group.
“Twitter’s action will not only help stem the tide of MPV misinformation but is also a clear example of leadership underscoring that institutions across all of civil society can play roles towards addressing this public health emergency,” GLAAD President and CEO Sarah Kate Ellis said in a press release. “Though anyone can contract MPV, it is disproportionately impacting the LGBTQ community, especially men who have sex with men, and it is urgent and critical to get the facts around vaccines, treatment, and prevention widely and equitably distributed.”
GLAAD has called for TikTok, YouTube, and Meta (owner of Facebook and Instagram) to add similar information and resources. None has yet specifically committed to adding info panels to direct users to accurate information from HHS or other authoritative public health sources. YouTube has said it is elevating the circulation of video content from authoritative sources such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and has funded a series of short videos on MPV with the Kaiser Family Foundation. TikTok has said it is “continuing to look into potential solutions,” according to GLAAD’s press release.
“Social media platforms have an opportunity to step up now and be part of the solution, instead of allowing misinformation about MPV and stigmatizing posts about LGBTQ people to run rampant,” Ellis said. “The window is closing for Meta, TikTok, and YouTube to make good on their commitments to protect LGBTQ users, and everyone, by implementing tools they have used to help curb other public health emergencies.”
GLAAD’s annual Social Media Safety Index, released in July, gave Facebook, Instagram, TikTok, Twitter, and YouTube failing scores on LGBTQ+ safety, privacy, and expression on the platforms. No platform earned a score of 50 or above out of a possible score of 100.