The war on misinformation, fake news, and questionable use of social media is still ongoing, and yesterday the Washington Post released a fact-checking plugin that will corroborate the veracity of Donald Trump’s tweets.
The ‘RealDonaldContext’ plugin is the work of Post reporter Philip Bump. It adds a small disclaimer below every tweet that highlights any sentence that might not be entirely accurate or truthful.
The plugin works via the Chrome browser and once installed users will get to see the fact-checking bar everytime they click on a tweet on the businessman’s timeline. Six months ago, Donald Trump revoked all campaign press credentials for Post journalists.
How does RealDonaldContext work?
Upon accessing @realDonaldTrump and clicking on any tweet, users will see a white box below a gray line with a headline explaining what’s wrong with the tweet and why in a few short sentences.
The interface also contains an explicit “Brought to you by the Washington Post” tagline at the bottom so that nobody can accuse Bump of working solo and usually has a ‘Learn More’ bit that takes the user towards related links and resources.
Though this is not in any way a laughing matter, many users are likely to find the Post’s fact-checking quite entertaining. The plugin is already up and running on the Chrome web store.
There’s history between Donald Trump and the Washington Post
Though the Republican nominee banned its reporters from all premises related to his campaign, in a very controversial move he invited Jeff Bezos, who owns both Amazon and the Post, to his tech-related summit last Wednesday.
Trump has accused the Post of “incredibly inaccurate” coverage of his campaign and has gone as far as insulting them, stating that they are “phony and dishonest.” Part of this behavior is what has prompted a campaign to close the President-elect’s Twitter account.
Bump has stated this new plugin is not a direct response to Donald Trump’s blockage of the Post or even to his remarks. The software receives constant updates, and a Firefox equivalent is currently in the works.
Good news: Porting this to Firefox. Will update when it’s available.
— Philip Bump (@pbump) December 16, 2016
In his initial announcement, he wrote the plugin’s objective was only to “slip a bit more context” into Trump’s tweets. This plugin is the second anti-misinformation effort to receive high publicity, following the B. S. Detector’s rise and fall at the hands of Facebook.
Source: Washington Post