On a High Note: Pinterest's Anti-Climate Denial Policy is Trending

Pinterest's Anti-Climate Denial Policy is Trending

In April, Pinterest announced a new policy that places a platform-wide ban on advertisements that include climate misinformation. The policy prohibited ads that cast doubt on the existence of climate change, that it is human-caused, and those spreading false information about natural disasters and extreme weather. The site will also partner with the Climate Disinformation Coalition and the Conscious Advertising Network to guide policymaking and build a "trusted and truthful” space. Now, the Environmental Defense Fund, a founding member of the Climate Disinformation Coalition, is fighting to ensure that other social media giants step up their efforts to squash climate disinformation.

Tech Giants and social networking sites are taking steps to limit climate misinformation, though with uneven results. Last October, Google announced "that it would no longer display ads on YouTube videos and other content that promote inaccurate claims about climate change.” And Facebook rolled out a misinformation-flagging feature, but studies estimate that 50% of posts slip by unflagged and that the feature is largely ineffective at combatting climate denial campaigns. Some research shows as many as 1.36 million daily views of climate misinformation on the platform.

In a quick follow to Pinterest’s announcement, Twitter also made an April announcement for its own policy update, no longer permitting advertisements that contradict climate science. Still, industry experts say that Pinterest’s policy remains the gold standard for combatting misinformation.

TED: The Dirty Strategies Behind Climate Misinformation | Harriet Kingaby, January 8, 2022.

CBS: Climate Change Conspiracies Spread Rapidly on Social Media During COP26, November 9, 2021.