Lawmakers clash with tech over political bias

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Lawmakers clashed Tuesday at a contentious hearing over claims that social media platforms and tech companies are biased against conservative viewpoints.

Republicans on the House Judiciary Committee said the hearing addressed a serious issue. But Democrats said the hearing, coming one day after President Trump dismissed Russian interference in the 2016 presidential election during a press conference with Russian President Vladimir Putin, was a waste of time.

“This committee has oversight of the Department of Justice,” said Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.). “Our president also disparaged the Department of Justice. Are we having a hearing on that? No.”

Rep. Jerrold Nadler (N.Y.), the panel’s top Democrat, tried to end the hearing early by introducing a motion to end discussion of alleged bias and instead move to an executive session on Russian election interference.

The largely symbolic motion was voted down 12-10.

Fellow Democrats, such as Reps. Jamie Raskin (Md.) and David Cicilline(R.I.) joined Nadler and Lieu in railing against conservatives for not putting enough focus on Trump and Russia.

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Raskin called the conservative fears about bias a “fantasy.”

thehill.com/policy/technology/397474-republicans-slam-tech-companies-over-anti-conservative-bias-democrats-slam

 

DELETE: TWITTER suspends 58 million accounts…

NEW YORK (AP) — Twitter suspended at least 58 million user accounts in the final three months of 2017, according to data obtained by The Associated Press. The figure highlights the company’s newly aggressive stance against malicious or suspicious accounts in the wake of Russian disinformation efforts during the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign.

Last week, Twitter confirmed a Washington Post report that it had suspended 70 million accounts in May and June. The cavalcade of suspensions has raised questions as to whether the crackdown could affect Twitter’s user growth and whether the company should have warned investors earlier. The company has been struggling with user growth compared to rivals like Instagram and Facebook.

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www.yahoo.com/news/apnewsbreak-twitter-suspended-58-million-190410826.html

FACEBOOK finally removes page inciting violence against Republicans

Facebook on Tuesday removed a page for inciting violence against Republicans after Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-Fla.) brought it up in a hearing.

Gaetz said his office previously brought the page to Facebook’s attention and the social media giant dismissed concerns. But he presented the page to Facebook’s head of global policy management directly during the House Judiciary Committee’s hearing examining how social media companies filter content.

During the hearing, the Florida Republican highlighted content posted on a page titled “Milkshakes against the Republican Party” that called for “crazed shooters” to target the GOP’s congressional baseball team and attack the NRA.

Gaetz noted the social media platform previously said the page didn’t meet its criteria for removal when his office contacted them about the posts.

thehill.com/homenews/house/397527-facebook-removes-page-inciting-violence-against-republicans-after-lawmakers

 

 

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