“Let Me Tweet That For You” raises concerns for journalists

Poynter:

“Let Me Tweet That For You” is pretty simple — you type in a Twitter username and a message, and it generates a realistic-looking image of a tweet from that person. It even adds fake retweet and favorite counts to lend some more credibility.

That should be a bit scary for journalists and anyone else concerned about potential hoaxes. Of course, it would be pretty easy to debunk one of these fake tweets if you just visit the person’s actual Twitter profile to see if the tweet really exists.

But what if it’s passed off as screenshot evidence of an allegedly deleted tweet?

Poynter says it raises concerns for journalists but it should raise flags for all of us who use Twitter and social media. Such as this fake Tweet: FAKETWEET



  • Bradley Rosenfeld

    It just automates using inspect element… Nothing scary.

  • SockRolid

    Glad to see this. It may help to separate the serious journalists / bloggers from the bozos.

    • Mother Hydra

      NAH. why do that, part of the fun is reaching the end of a Dan Lyons article and wondering if you’ve been exposed to a slow gass leak.

  • http://twitter.com/pdjudd Paul Judd

    Yea, but how many people actually know about that, much less what the “inspect” element actually is? I wager most people know about people deleting tweets (since celebrities have done it) more than what you are talking about. Take a tweet like the one above. If I didn’t know it was fake, I would have assumed either a) a joke, Jim hitting the Heineken a little too hard, or C) a serious offer. Even if I went thought the effort of looking through Jim’s feed (which how many people bother??) I could just say, “it’s not proof of a fake, Jim could have just deleted it after changing his mind”

    • crabbit_git

      How many non twitter users know that you can delete a tweet? How many twitter users know that if you delete a tweet it can still exist as a retweet and be tracked back to source. How many journalists that use twitter as a source know that users can delete their tweets. How many journalists know that tweets can live on as retweets. How many journalists know that tweets can be faked.

      We’re not talking about tech specific journalists, we are talking about journalists that cover politics, war, conflict, social issues … ad infinitum…

      This is a problem.

      When I hear a journalist pass the phrase, or a phrase similar to “my source is twitter”, “twitter is the source”, “twitter is faster” , “I only rely on twitter”, “my news comes from twitter now, only” I KNOW for a FACT that that journalist is a moron.

      Twitter is great for fast moving content and fast moving news, but its greatest benefit is its largest hurdle. None of it is either verified, or verifiable until an established agency can get a body into arena.

      • http://twitter.com/pdjudd Paul Judd

        I think it’s more known that you can delete a tweet – such has been reported before. One thing that is a problem is people putting too much stock in Twitter anyhow. Even though Twitter is so much like RSS – where companies put legit news links on tweets, people put much more weight on individual comments than they should.

  • http://twitter.com/Moeskido Moeskido

    This sounds about as awful as faked Wikipedia screenshots.

  • MrPhotoEd

    Wow, Really? $100′s? Is that Canadian or US? Just kidding. The biggest danger to journalism is not enough resources to fact check fake evidence in the get it up now world of journalism.

    Just a thought

  • Steven Fisher

    Meanwhile on Facebook, Bill Gates is giving away free iPhones.

    This is pretty much par for the course on social media, isn’t it? Everything needs to be verified. For this hack, at least you’re not even on the Twitter site.

  • chjode

    Best I can do is $90 and I’ll throw in this cupcake. It has only one bite taken.

    Correction, two bites.

    The cupcake is no longer part of the offer.

  • Mother Hydra

    I knew this article had comments. Stupid responsive design doesn’t show them for iPhone/iPad.