The hearing is devoted to changes in the law on the responsibility of Internet companies for content on their platforms
Executives from Facebook, Twitter and Google address the Senate Trade Committee on Wednesday; we will remind that earlier they spoke in support of the law on the protection of Internet companies. This topic is causing disagreement among US lawmakers over the responsibility of tech giants for moderating content on their platforms..
Mark Zuckerberg from Facebook, Jack Dorsey from Twitter and Sundar Pichai from Google were invited to the hearing. Senators, led by committee chairman Roger Wicker, focus on how these companies track and moderate political content on the Internet..
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Heads of Facebook, Twitter and Google Answer Senators’ Questions About Social Media Accountability
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Facebook, Twitter, Google CEOs Testify At Senate Hearing | NBC News
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According to prepared speeches, corporate heads emphasize that Section 230 of the Telecommunications Decency Act, which protects companies from liability for user generated content, is critical to free speech on the Internet..
Dorsey warns the committee that undermining the guidelines in this section could negatively impact the way people communicate on the Internet. Zuckerberg speaks out in favor of changing the law, warning, however, that online platforms are likely to increase censorship to avoid legal risks if section 230 is repealed..
Senator Wicker notes that the law protects companies from “potentially damaging legal action” but also “gives Internet platforms the ability to control, suppress and even censor content in any way that meets their standards.” “The time has come to put an end to these indulgences,” says the text of his speech..
President Donald Trump has repeatedly called for tech companies to be held accountable for crushing conservative voices. Calls for Section 230 reform by Republican lawmakers have intensified ahead of the election, although the initiative is unlikely to be endorsed by Congress this year..
Senator Ted Cruz tweeted a photo of himself and Dorsey as UFC fighters on Tuesday with the caption “Cruise and Dorsey Standing For Free Speech.” “I’ve said for a long time that tech giants pose the greatest threat to our First Amendment rights and to the future of democracy in general,” Cruz said ahead of the hearing..
Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden also spoke out in support of repealing the law.
Leading Democrat on the Commerce Committee, Maria Cantwell, initially turned down a Republican proposal to summon the heads of the three tech giants to hearings, but later changed her mind and said she welcomed the Section 230 debate..
“I’m sure the conversation will be full of politics, given that there is only a week left before the elections, and this is unfortunate,” Cantwell told Reuters, adding that she sees the need for serious discussion on the issue..
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