Twitter brings Birdwatch tweet fact checking to iOS and the web

Twitter (Image credit: iMore)

What you need to know

  • Birdwatch fact-checking notes are now appearing on the web and iPhone, iPad.
  • The feature is only rolling out to a pilot group right now, though.

Back in January Twitter announced Birdwatch, a community-driven attempt to try and find fake news on its social network. In it first state, Birdwatch needed people to visit its website to see what was going on – but that's now changing. Birdwatch notes will now appear on tweets in the iPhone and iPad apps as well as on the web.

Twitter made the announcement via a tweet just now, saying that the notes will only appear for those who are part of a pilot program right now. But the idea is a good one and from what I've seen it looks like it could have a real impact.

Check out the Twitter thread to see what I mean.

See more

Twitter's January announcement mentioned that it intended to make Birdwatch notes visible on tweets, and that's what's beginning today.

Birdwatch allows people to identify information in Tweets they believe is misleading and write notes that provide informative context. We believe this approach has the potential to respond quickly when misleading information spreads, adding context that people trust and find valuable. Eventually we aim to make notes visible directly on Tweets for the global Twitter audience, when there is consensus from a broad and diverse set of contributors.

Each note can be rated, with the idea being that accurate notes will be surfaced while inaccurate ones won't. It's the typical crowdsourcing model that we've seen elsewhere and I think we all hope it will be a success. Unfortuantely, these kinds of things are only as good as the people who use them and, being Twitter, I'm not really sure whether that's a good thing or not!

Unfortunately, you're going to need the official Twitter app to see any of this. That's a shame because it isn't one of the best Twitter apps for iPhone or indeed any other phone. Speaking of iPhones, isn't it time you took advantage of the best iPhone deals and treat yourself to a new one?

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.