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NPR exits Twitter over deceptive “government-funded media” term.

NPR will stop updating its 52 Twitter accounts, including its almost nine million-follower @NPR handle. NPR Politics and Weekend Edition are among these accounts.

Last week, Twitter labeled NPR as “state-affiliated media” like it does RT, Russia’s state-backed mouthpiece that spreads Kremlin propaganda. However, the U.S. government has no editorial influence over NPR, which earned 1% of its revenue from public financing in 2020. NPR’s account was renamed “government-funded media,” but representatives say it’s still deceptive.

“At this point I have lost my faith in the decision-making at Twitter,” NPR CEO John Lansing told an NPR reporter. “I need time to decide if Twitter can be trusted.”

Twitter calls any news organization that receives “some or all” government money “government-funded” and “may have varying degrees of government involvement over editorial content.” Twitter also labeled the BBC.

The New York Times, followed by 55 million people, was de-verified by Twitter owner Elon Musk. Twitter took great care to remove the New York Times’ badge as quickly as possible, but all verified accounts that don’t subscribe to Twitter Blue will lose their checkmark by April 20 (delayed from April 1). This makes it easier to imitate the main news source and creates uncertainty about its authenticity.

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