Facebook and Twitter show good will

Toplui of Facebook and Twitter tried Wednesday to show how hard they work to foreign influence on the Democratic process to prevent that.

Google, Twitter and Facebook were summoned to testify before the Senate committee on Intelligence. In October last year, the three big internet companies already summoned to testify about foreign interference in the elections, but then did establish that figures of the second mixed off – to anger of the Senators.

This time it comes with company’s senior management: Jack Dorsey of Twitter and Sheryl Sandberg, the right hand of Mark Zuckerberg (who in april extended solo testified to the rise of the Cambridge Analytica case). Google toplui Larry Page and Sundar Pichai had been invited, but challenged.

New show

The show was very different than at previous hearings with the internetreuzen. Sheryl Sandberg is increasingly pushed forward as the face of Facebook, and Wednesday, it was obvious why: she was serious, respectful, and sincerely about it, and put the emphasis on the willingness of the company to cooperate with the political world, with competitors and with external experts. “We are more determined than our opponents,” she said.

Jack Dorsey, usually a rather quiet person, succeeded also to the Senators to convince of his good will and openness. “We were unprepared and poorly armed for the challenges,” he confessed in a speech which he read on his smartphone.

Or to be more than just a change of tone, fell hard to create. A not unimportant element was probably the unveiling of last month: when did Facebook, Twitter and Google announced that they are hundreds of fake pages and accounts had been removed which were used in a beïnvloedingspoging from Iran. They got there Wednesday, compliments for the Senators, already being on the potential danger: the Russian tactics have followers, and so are better countermeasures is needed.

The unanimous politicians

The politicians have sounded remarkably unanimous. Both the Republican chairman and the Democratic vice-chairman of the Commission explained similar accents: they were happy with the progress on Facebook and Twitter, but being on the need to do more. Only found Democrat Mark Warner, that the legislation probably will be needed. ‘The era of the Wild West in social media comes to an end, but it is not yet clear what comes next, ” he said. The Republican Richard Burr warned that the ” very difficult legislation to write without the freedom of speech to touch’.

Also a surprise, for those earlier hearings followed: there were a lot of serious, substantive questions to which a response came. The Democratic senator Ron Wyden pointed out how dangerous it is that personal information on Facebook can be misused for targeted political messages, for example, to members of minority groups to discourage so that they are not going to vote. ‘Do you agree that privacy is now a matter of national security?”, he asked Dorsey and Sandberg, who are both with a short ‘yes’ answered. Other senators, including former Republican presidential candidate Marco Rubio, asked Dorsey and Sandberg about their cooperation with authoritarian regimes.


Wednesday night late, our time, is still a second hearing, this time of a Committee on Energy and Commerce of the House. That is explicitly called by a number of Republicans to Jack Dorsey of Twitter on the roster to explain about the alleged censorship of conservative voices on the berichtennetwerk. The Democrats are upset that Twitter, if only the right complotsite Infowars refused to block. The tone in which hearing is expected to also bitser and partijdiger.

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