The Latest: Senate Dem not impressed with Twitter briefing

The Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Latest on Twitter’s sessions with congressional investigators (all times local):

5:10 p.m.

The ranking Democrat on the Senate intelligence committee says a closed-door presentation by executives from social media giant Twitter was “deeply disappointing.”

Sen. Mark Warner of Virginia says the information Twitter shared with committee staff was “frankly inadequate on almost every level.” He also says the company appeared to not appreciate the seriousness of his panel’s investigation into Russian election interference.

Warner says he wants the company to provide more information to his committee. The panel is probing how Twitter and Facebook were used by Russians to spread misinformation and propaganda during the 2016 presidential election.

The scrutiny of the social media networks is part of the committee’s larger probe into Russian election interference and whether there was any coordination with Trump associates.


4:35 p.m.

Social media company Twitter says it took action to suspend about two dozen accounts that were linked to fake, Russia-tied Facebook accounts were pushing divisive social and political issues during the 2016 U.S. presidential election.

The company says in a blog post that it found 22 accounts corresponding to about 450 Facebook accounts. The company says it also found an additional 179 related or linked accounts and took action on some of them that it found in violation of its rules.

Twitter shared those findings with the House and Senate intelligence committees Thursday. The committees have been investigating Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election and how Twitter and Facebook were used to spread of misinformation and propaganda.


4 p.m.

The social media giant Twitter says it has provided congressional investigators with a “roundup” of ads from accounts used by Russia’s state-sponsored television network, RT.

The company says in a blog post that RT spent $274,100 on ads targeted to markets in the U.S. during 2016. Twitter provided the ads to investigators during closed-door meetings Thursday with the staff of the Senate and House intelligence committees.

The committees have been investigating Russia’s interference in the 2016 presidential election and any possible coordination with Trump associates. They have specifically been looking at Twitter and Facebook and their roles in the spread of misinformation and propaganda during the election.

Twitter says the ads it provided came from three handles used by RT. Most tweets from the accounts promoted news stories.


3:30 p.m.

Social media giant Twitter is visiting Capitol Hill as part of the House and Senate investigations into Russian interference in the 2016 elections.

Twitter executives visited both the Senate and House intelligence committees, briefing staff in closed-door meetings that lasted several hours.

The meetings come after similar briefings from Facebook earlier this month. The House and Senate panels have invited both tech giants, along with Google, to appear at public hearings this fall.

The committees are scrutinizing the spread of false news stories and propaganda on social media, to what extent Russia was involved and whether anyone in the United States helped target those stories.


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