It’s probably fair to say Donald Trump has a love-hate relationship with Twitter. It’s by far his favorite social media platform. However, it’s also the only one that has been stepping up to call out when the president abuses the company’s rules that all users must abide by.
Case in point: Yesterday Twitter took the step of labeling one of President Trump’s tweets with a “manipulated media” warning, reports Reuters. The label was applied to a tweet that contained a manipulated video made to look like it was a news story from CNN.
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 19, 2020
In the manipulated clip, a Black toddler is seen running from a white toddler; below the CNN Chiron reads, “Terrified toddler runs from racists baby . . . Racist baby probably a Trump voter.” The video then goes on to show viewers “what actually happened” and reveals alternate footage of the two toddlers, who are actually friends in real life, and just playing with each other.
While the footage of the two toddlers is genuine, the video Trump tweeted makes it look like CNN was trying to manipulate the footage for a news story. This, of course, never happened. Indeed, CNN ran a story about the two toddlers in 2019 titled “These two toddlers are showing us what real-life besties look like.”
In other words, it looks like Trump’s tweet containing the altered media was designed to lend credence to his frequent claim that CNN churns out “fake news.” But once it was clear the media was manipulated, Twitter slapped its “manipulated media” label of shame on the tweet.
As Twitter’s policies state, “We may label Tweets containing synthetic and manipulated media to help people understand their authenticity and to provide additional context.”
This isn’t the first time Twitter has placed a warning on a tweet by Trump. Back in May Twitter took the step of hiding a Trump tweet from automatic viewing because it glorified violence.