Facebook, Google, Twitter CEOs’ prepared statements defend Section 230

The CEOs of Facebook, Google and Twitter released prepared remarks on Tuesday that warn against repealing Section 230, the statute that protects the social networks from liability for their users’ posts. The remarks were released in advance of Wednesday’s hearing with the Senate Commerce Committee.

The CEOs have been called in front of the committee because lawmakers on both sides of the aisle are concerned about how each company moderates, or sometimes fails to moderate, content posted by users.

The committee will examine Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act, a statute that has provided tech platforms immunity from legal liability for their users’ posts since the late 1990s. In recent years, as tech companies face more scrutiny over their content moderation practices and ad-driven business models, the law has attracted bipartisan criticism for its broad protections.

Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey: Undermining Section 230 will leave only the largest tech

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Section 230: Why the CEOs of Facebook, Google and Twitter are testifying before the Senate this week

What began as complaints about anti-conservative censorship by social media companies has now evolved into outright allegations of election interference, as high-ranking Republicans have accused online platforms of helping Democrats by way of their content moderation decisions. On Wednesday, the Senate Commerce Committee is set to grill the CEOs of Facebook (FB), Google (GOOG) and Twitter (TWTR) amid right-wing cries of partisanship and threats to change a critical law, known as Section 230, that protects the companies’ ability to moderate content as they see fit.

Outside experts have found little evidence to support claims of widespread, systematic political bias in Silicon Valley’s technology. But the conservative allegations are an explosive charge and a dramatic escalation ahead of Election Day. They reflect not only the stakes of the race, but also the fact that Facebook, Twitter and YouTube have become key parts of America’s … Read More

FCC changes its stance on Section 230 policy after months of Trump tweets

The FCC is an independent agency, and historically, it has sought to emphasize its separation from the White House. But some critics still saw the FCC’s timing as politically peculiar. Only a year ago, top FCC aides had told the Trump administration privately that they did not want to pursue regulation around online speech, according to four people with direct knowledge of the talks, who spoke on condition of anonymity to describe confidential proceedings. The comments came as part of a series of conversations convened by the White House designed to explore potential regulation targeting Silicon Valley.

Pai himself previously had expressed opposition to new FCC regulation targeting social-media sites. On Thursday, however, he set the agency on a path toward issuing new rules around Section 230, citing concerns shared by “all three branches of government” about the tech giants’ behavior.

“Social media companies have a First Amendment right to

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FCC considering Section 230 reform after Trump says laws should be revoked

  • The Federal Communications Commission will “clarify the meaning” of Section 230 of the US Communications Act, its chairman Ajit Pai said Thursday.
  • Section 230 grants internet companies power to moderate the content that appears on their platforms, and protects them from liability for illegal content posted by users.
  • President Trump has railed against Section 230, arguing that it allows tech companies like Facebook to censor lawful speech and target conservatives.
  • “Social media companies have a First Amendment right to free speech,” Pai said. “But they do not have a First Amendment right to a special immunity denied to other media outlets, such as newspapers.”
  • Internet rights charity Access Now also condemned Pai’s decision, calling him a “puppet” for the Trump administration.
  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is re-examining the part of US law that lets tech companies decide what people are allowed to

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