National Public Radio (NPR) has announced that it will no longer post content to its 52 official Twitter feeds in protest against a label by the Elon Musk-owned platform. The label, "state-affiliated media," was seen by some as an attempt to undermine the credibility of the news organization.
The decision to quit Twitter follows a dispute between NPR and the social media company over how its account is described. Last week, Twitter temporarily designated NPR as “state-affiliated media” and refused to change it despite requests from NPR.
In a statement released Wednesday, NPR said that it had asked Twitter multiple times to remove the label but that their requests were denied. The statement also said that the label was inaccurate and misleading and that it undermined NPR's credibility with its audiences.
NPR's Chief Digital Officer Thomas Hjelm said in a statement: “We believe this labeling is inaccurate and undermines our integrity as an independent news organization." He added: "We have requested multiple times for them to remove this inaccurate label, but they have refused."
The decision by NPR to quit Twitter comes at a time when social media companies are facing increasing scrutiny over how they handle misinformation on their platforms. It also highlights the power of these companies over news organizations who rely on them for distribution.
Twitter has yet to comment on NPR's decision but it remains to be seen if other news organizations will follow suit in light of this development.