Tags: Donald Trump | Media Bias | Trump Administration | censorship | social media | twitter | senators

GOP Sens Push FCC to Act on Trump Social Media Order

kelly loeffler wears a mask as she walks out of a congressional hearing
Sen. Kelly Loeffler, R-Ga. (Win McNamee/Getty Images)

Tuesday, 09 June 2020 04:14 PM

Four Republican senators on Tuesday urged the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) to review whether to revise liability protections for Internet companies after U.S. President Donald Trump urged action.

Trump said last month he wants to "remove or change" a provision of a law that shields social media companies from liability for content posted by their users and directed a U.S. Commerce Department agency to petition the FCC to take action within 60 days.

Sens. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., Kelly Loeffler, R-Ga., Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., and Josh Hawley, R-Mo., asked the FCC to review Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act and "clearly define the criteria for which companies can receive protections under the statute."

"Social media companies have become involved in a range of editorial and promotional activity; like publishers, they monetize, edit, and otherwise editorialize user content. It is time to take a fresh look at Section 230 and to interpret the vague standard of 'good faith' with specific guidelines and direction," the senators wrote.

Trump signed an executive order that seeks to curtail their legal protections after Twitter added a notice that one of his tweets violated its rules for "glorifying violence," shortly after it slapped a fact-check label on another of his tweets against voting by mail. It was the first time Twitter had challenged his posts.

Last week, an advocacy group backed by the tech industry filed suit asking a judge to block the executive order.

FCC Chairman Ajit Pai, who in 2018 said he did not see a role for the agency to regulate websites like Facebook, Alphabet's Google and Twitter, declined to comment on potential actions in response to Trump's executive order. He told reporters Tuesday it would not be appropriate to "prejudge a petition that I haven't seen."

The White House declined to comment.

FCC Commissioner Mike O'Rielly said Tuesday the order poses a lot "of very complex issues."

O'Rielly said earlier "as a conservative, I'm troubled voices are stifled by liberal tech leaders. At same time, I'm extremely dedicated to the First Amendment which governs much here."

© 2020 Thomson/Reuters. All rights reserved.


   
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The FCC must review the Communications Decency Act and "clearly define the criteria for which companies can receive protections under the statute," according to Sens. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., Kelly Loeffler, R-Ga., Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., and Josh Hawley, R-Mo.
censorship, social media, twitter, senators, fcc, section 230, conservative, shadow ban
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2020-14-09
Tuesday, 09 June 2020 04:14 PM
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