Reportedly, Senator Josh Hawley is turning up the heat on a topic that is sure to ignite outrage in Silicon Valley. Hawley—who is a well-known technology critic—introduced legislation in recent time that will take away the immunity that technology giants receive under Section 230 of the CDA (Communications Decency Act) of 1996. The CDA defends online platforms—like Twitter, Facebook, and Google’s YouTube—from accountability for the content users post. Nevertheless, companies would be capable of earning immunity from the attack if they submit to semi-annual audits to show their algorithms and content-elimination practices are “politically neutral.”
The notion of restricting Section 230 immunity has gained bipartisan backing in the last few years, as the firms have struggled to keep illegal and offensive content, ranging from rebel propaganda to overseas-influenced election meddling from their platforms. Revoking the immunity provision can force these firms to utilize an editorial system where every part of user-posted content will have to be investigated for libelous or illegal material before it is posted instead depending on human checkers and algorithms to check it after it was already online and had an opportunity to spread to millions of people. This will fundamentally change the business models of firms that depend on large volumes of user-created content, counting all the big social networks.
Recently, Facebook was in news as its cryptocurrency is facing political repulse in Europe. Facebook disclosed its Libra cryptocurrency in recent time and it did not go unnoticed by European executives. Hours after the firm declared its crypto ambitions, Bruno Le Maire—French Finance Minister—rejected the project. As pet to Bloomberg, Le Maire stated it was “unacceptable that Libra becomes an autonomous currency. It cannot and it should not happen.”