‘Good bots’ on Twitter will now be identifiable by a label added to their profiles, the social platform has said. The update is reportedly based on feedback from users who said they were interested in getting more context about non-human accounts.
According to Twitter, good bots include those that share information such as Covid-19, weather or public museums. This however, does not mean that all bots with such information will be labelled. The company says that bots are prone to giving misleading information and can be such a headache to users.
As a result, Twitter says it crack down on inauthentic bot accounts that break the platform’s rules.
According to Research by a US University, Carnegie Mellon, half of the accounts that shared Covid-19 information on Twitter in 2020 were automated accounts. There was such a rise in the spread of misinformation, leading to a crack down of the same by social media companies. Twitter says tens of millions of accounts were deleted in the sweep, but some were found to actually have a positive impact to users.
Twitter started testing the systems in May in an attempt to help users differentiate between bots and human-run accounts. By adding labels to the good bots, Twitter hopes to improve their legitimacy and increase the level of trust and transparency with the public.
Twitter says it will launch the feature with a handful of bot developers, with plans to extend the service to all developers in the few coming weeks. For it to be effective, the developers will need to be open to the idea that now more users will be able to tell that the accounts are not run by humans.