“You may not use Twitter’s services to share false or misleading information about COVID-19 which may lead to harm,” Twitter announces in their “COVID-19 misleading information policy.”
“Even as scientific understanding of the COVID-19 pandemic continues to develop, we’ve observed the emergence of persistent conspiracy theories, alarmist rhetoric unfounded in research or credible reporting, and a wide range of unsubstantiated rumors, which left uncontextualized can prevent the public from making informed decisions regarding their health and puts individuals, families, and communities at risk,” Twitter adds.
With the subject of social media censorship being at the forefront of debate when it comes to freedom of speech, many have been critical of platforms like Twitter for having a heavy-handed approach to online censorship. This has led many to question why are their own policies are not being applied to Chinese Communist Party propaganda.
On Tuesday, Hua Chunying, the CCP’s Foreign Ministry Spokesperson Director General, shared what many condemned as anti-American COVID-19 disinformation.
— Hua Chunying 华春莹 (@SpokespersonCHN) July 28, 2021
The “US is irresponsible to the world,” the image header reads, before listing five unsubstantiated claims which placed the blame for the COVID-19 pandemic at the feet of the United States and its military.
- The US has recently enhanced its efforts to manipulate the origin tracing of COVID-19 via political means. It seemingly cares about the origin tracing work, but actually has done nothing conducive to it or global solidarity.
- The US, enjoying the world’s most developed and maturest medical technologies, not only failed to control the pandemic at home and caused nearly 35 million infections and 610 deaths but also made the virus flow outbound.
- US personnel overseas attached little importance to the health of local communities and disrespected local quarantine regulations, which made the virus spread faster.
- In early July 2020, the governor of Japan’s Okinawa Prefecture confirmed at a press conference that tens of American military personnel at a US military base in the prefecture were infected with COVID-19, but the US side refused to take quarantine measures and allowed batches of soldiers to leave the base.
- On May 31, 2021, a large number of US military personnel on vacation in South Korea went out of a military base and gathered at the Haeundae beach, Busan. They refused to wear masks, which triggered strong dissatisfaction among local residents.
The second post was titled, “How has US poisoned the world?”
“According to the National Travel and Tourism Office of the US, over 23.19 million US citizens went abroad via air and land ports between April 2020 and March 2021. The period from November 2020 to January 2021 is the peak of the epidemic in the United States, with an average of 186,000 newly diagnosed cases per day,” the page reads. “During the same period, the average number of US citizens going abroad was 87,000, reaching a peak.”
“A total of 160,000 illegal immigrants were repatriated by the US between March and September 2020. Infections were found among those repatriated to Guatemala, Jamaica, Mexico and Haiti,” the post concluded. “The US failed to put the pandemic under control at home, and didn’t take effective border control measures, which further exacerbated the global spread of the virus.”