Claim: A viral Twitter screenshot with the inscription of the “Twitter Public Policy” claims Twitter is apologetic for the recent action it took against President Buhari’s tweet.
The viral screenshot of a tweet alleged to have been tweeted by ‘Twitter Public Policy’ is false. The screenshot of the tweet and others alike were created using an online tool.
It’s no more news that the Nigerian government has banned Twitter operations in the country. While this decision taken by the government was not least expected, the action seems to have aroused diverse debates from members of the public.
After the EndSARS protest in the last quarter of 2020, the Nigerian government accused Twitter of arousing tension in the country–launching what appeared to be a subtle feud between Twitter and the Nigerian government.
The climax of the situation unfolded when twitter deleted President Buhari’s recent Tweet in what they described as a bridge to their policy. However, days after Twitter’s action on the president, the Nigerian Government banned Twitter operations in Nigeria in what many saw as Buhari’s response to Twitter’s action.
In response to the now popular topic in the Nigerian Public sphere, Twitter, shared on its ‘public policy’ handle its concerns over ‘open internet’ in Nigeria; apparently standing by its actions with no apologies directed to the Nigerian government.
The recent Tweet by ‘Twitter Public Policy’
Nonetheless, a viral screenshot of a tweet bearing the inscription of the ‘Twitter Public Policy’ handle, appeared online with a rather new narrative that seems to suggest Twitter’s desire to apologise and mend things with the Nigerian Government.
With no date stamps, the acclaimed tweet appeared June 5th, 2021 widely shared on WhatsApp and across different social media platforms. Some users who came across the alleged tweet, expressed disbelief and stressed that Twitter ‘will not’ share such a tweet, while others felt it was Twitter’s way of making amends with the Nigerian Government. On Nairaland, a popular interactive site in Nigeria with over 3 million active users, the alleged tweet was shared alongside the narrative “Twitter bows to Nigerian Government”.
Whatever the case may be, confirming the originality and validity of such a tweet is vital, especially at a time when most Nigerians are trying to wrap their hands around the novel action taken by the government.
DUBAWA first launched a timeline search on all the recent posts made by the ‘Twitter Public Policy’ handle. The alleged tweet, circulating as a screenshot, was not found anywhere on the Twitter Public Policy handle. This finding, however, led DUBAWA to uncover an online tool that allows users to create fake screenshots while posing as anyone they deem fit.
The Tweet Generator
‘The Tweet generator’ is a website based application that allows online users to create fake tweets. The application can be used to create a tweet template of choice, with a date of choice and all other things that a real tweet embodies. This same tool was also used to purport a fake narrative referenced to Mark Zuckerberg, CEO Facebook.
Fake Tweet created on ‘Tweet Generator’ posing as Mark Zuckerberg
Disclaimer: the above tweet is not real.
It was only created for the purpose of illustration and clarity.
Evenmore, other red flags uncovered by DUBAWA from the acclaimed tweet shows that it is entirely fake.
The above texts show the disparity between the acclaimed tweet (2) and an original tweet (1) taken. While the original tweet has ‘@’ before policy the fake tweet missed that part entirely. Originally generated tweets always come with the ‘@’ symbol attached to the username.
While the original tweet has a hand-like symbol in front of the #Keepiton, this is not so with the fake one.
Dubawa also conducted image forensics of the fake tweet in comparison to the real one taken from ‘Twitter Public Policy’ page. We conducted an error level analysis on the two images, checking the authenticity of opacity (0.95), error scale (94), JPEG Quality (94) on the same scale.
Image 1: Results from forensics conducted on the original image. The outcome is a glittering ray of colors emerging from the text.
Image 2: forensic results from the fake tweet. Aside from the 3 glittering parts of the image, the main text is entirely black and white.
The tweet under scrutiny is confirmed to be fake. It was not from Twitter nor was it ever tweeted. The manipulation of twitter screen shots is now a common phenomenon used to mislead unsuspecting members of the public. This claim is false.