CNN’s Twitter account has over 45 million followers. Many of them are in Ohio. According to a Tweet by CNN, Tuesday’s primary election has been moved to June. It has not. Will Twitter suspend the account for spreading false election information? Their Terms of Service indicate they should, and they have suspended much smaller accounts in the past for even making jokes that seem to be election date, time, or location “disinformation.”
What CNN Tweeted was very clearly worse than obvious jokes. The Tweet stayed live for 29 minutes before CNN finally removed it. In that amount of time with so many followers, the damage was done. One can argue that with a single Tweet, CNN likely misinformed more people about an election date than all of the combined conservative accounts suspended over jokes since the policy was initiated.
Ohio Governor Mike DeWine had requested to move the primary to June, but the courts denied the request and the election will proceed on Tuesday. The mistaken headline and Tweet seemed to have been pre-written based on the assumption the move of the primary would be granted. There is no way the reporters, even ones at CNN, could have mistaken the ruling as it was unambiguous. It seemed everyone involved was just being sloppy.
The coronavirus may end up being a major influence on the primary because frontrunner Joe Biden holds the lion’s share of support from elderly Democrats. His remaining opponent, Bernie Sanders, has a much younger support base. CNN has acted in favor of Biden and against Sanders for months.
CNN is a “news” outlet that thrives on fake news and constantly spreads disinformation. Perhaps Twitter just assumes nobody takes them seriously anymore. After all, they often appear to be a parody account.