Tuesday March 26, 2019
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US to Probe Social Media Giants Like Facebook, Twitter Over Censorship Concern

Following the meeting, Twitter shares fell six per cent on Wednesday, CNBC reported

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Facebook, video chat
LinkedIn faced probe for Facebook ads targeting 18 mn non-members. Pixabay

After Wednesday’s congressional hearings, Facebook and Twitter will now face questions from the Justice Department (DOJ) over allegations of political bias, an issue flagged by US President Donald Trump.

In a meeting in September, US Attorney General Jeff Sessions, along with state attorneys general, would look into whether Facebook and Twitter are “intentionally stifling the free exchange of ideas on their platforms”, CNET reported on Wednesday.

The DOJ announced the meeting on a day when Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg appeared before the US Congress, admitting to the lawmakers that they were “too slow to act” and “ill-prepared” to tackle foreign interference on their platforms.

Facebook
Facebook App on a smartphone device. (VOA)

According to The Washington Post, Sandberg told the US Senate Intelligence Committee that they were too slow to spot this and too slow to act. “That’s on us.”

The social networking platforms attracted criticism for being vulnerable to Russia-linked influence campaigns.

Trump has accused Google, Facebook and Twitter of trying to “silence” conservative voices.

Appearing before the House Committee on Energy and Commerce on Wednesday in a hearing on online censorship of conservative opinions and misinformation activities ahead of the 2018 mid-term elections, Dorsey said Twitter will remain an “impartial” “global town square”, and it does “not shadow-ban anyone based on political ideology”.

Twitter
Twitter on a smartphone device. VOA

“To serve the public conversation, Twitter is incentivised to keep all voices on the platform,” he said.

Twitter has constantly denied the claims by Republicans that conservative accounts were shadow-banned or their opinions were censored on the platform.

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Earlier in the day, Dorsey testified before the Senate Intelligence Committee on Russian meddling in the 2016 US election.

Following the meeting, Twitter shares fell six per cent on Wednesday, CNBC reported. (IANS)

Next Story

Election Commission of India Joins Twitter Ahead of LS Polls

Available in 12 languages, the election emoji would feature an image of the Parliament of India

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Twitter, tweets, India
The Twitter logo appears on a phone post on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.. VOA

The Election Commission of India on Friday joined Twitter ahead of the Lok Sabha elections while the micro-blogging site also launched a special election emoji aimed at encouraging participation in election-related discussions, encouraging more people to go and vote.

Available in 12 languages, the election emoji would feature an image of the Parliament of India.

To further raise awareness among voters, the Election Commission of India has launched the “Systematic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation” programme (SVEEP) on the platform.

Twitter, India, Smartphone
Twitter on a smartphone device. Pixabay

“Twitter India welcomes the Election Commission of India’s SVEEP (Systematic Voters’ Education and Electoral Participation Program) (@ECISVEEP) onboard the platform,” the company said in a statement.

“India is the world’s largest democracy, and the upcoming election is a key priority for us at Twitter. Over the past several months, we’ve taken significant steps to safeguard the integrity of conversations and enhance the health of our platform. We are honoured to onboard the Election Commission handle to encourage voter education,” Mahima Kaul, Director, Public Policy and Government at Twitter India said.

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“Citizens will receive crucial information directly from the Election Commission on Twitter, in turn they can engage with and amplify accurate and positive information to their community.” (IANS)