Saturday, August 10, 2019

Trump considers Executive Order putting the FCC in charge of monitoring social media censorship

Trump is reportedly considering issuing an executive order that would place regulation of Internet monitoring by large social media sites under the FCC or FTC. 

The order reportedly claims to protect speakers from unreasonable censorship (especially of conservatives, in practice).
Brian Fung has a discussion of the order on CNN Business. 

Fight for the Future (known for its opposition to Trump’s rolling back net neutrality) is claiming that the XO would enable any censorship Trump wants, petition site. 

Gizmodo expresses similar concerns in an article by Melanie Ehrenkranz and suggests that social networks might actually shut down with greatly weakened Section 230.  But it is hard to see how the FCC could really do very much with this bureaucracy.

EFF notes a recent Second Circuit ruling (Sophia Cope and Aaron Mackey) that says Section 230 protects Facebook from downstream liability in a case involving Hamas.  Other circuit rulings cited were weaker and predicated on the credibility of specific claims of harms. 

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