Sci-tech

How to watch Facebook, Google, and Twitter get grilled by Congress again

How to watch Facebook, Google, and Twitter get grilled by Congress again”

"We are not going to go away, gentlemen", Feinstein continued.

Silicon Valley giants faced an aggressive grilling by the Senate Intelligence Committee Wednesday morning over the role their platforms have inadvertently played in Russia's meddling in USA politics. "You have a huge problem on your hands". "The real story is the amount of misinformation and divisive content that was pushed for free on Russian-backed pages, which then spread widely on the news feeds of tens of millions of Americans".

"The foreign interference we saw was reprehensible", said Stretch, who quickly added that the ads posted by "bad actors" on Facebook were a tiny portion of the content that appeared on the site. Google and Twitter also came forward with their own numbers.

"The U.S. government has thus far proven incapable of adapting to meet this 21st century challenge". These lawmakers could soon limit that freedom. "What we're talking about is a cataclysmic change. What we're talking about is the beginning of a cyber warfare".

Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) said the disinformation campaign underscores the "frightening power of social media".

Colin Stretch, Facebook's general counsel, sheepishly admitted the company missed a key signal and should have had a "broader lens". But little has gotten through. Sen.

Coons said he wished the tech companies had sent their top executives on Tuesday rather than in-house lawyers. "I find your answer very disappointing". About 50 people waited to get in as senators fired pointed questions and waved at cardboard displays of outrageous ads.

"This is bigger than any one company", Stretch said at one point.

"We are certainly troubled".

The company representatives - Facebook's general counsel Colin Stretch, Twitter's acting general counsel Sean Edgett, and Google's general counsel Kent Walker - outlined a steps they have taken to limit the deceptive content and inflammatory posts.

"We are committed to doing our part", he told lawmakers in his opening statement.

Klobuchar noted that none of the companies included "issue ads" in their updated advertising policies — even though that's what the majority of the Russia-linked ads were.

Other senators want Facebook and the platform to simply admit their wrongdoings. Mark R. Warner (Va.), the ranking Democrat on the committee, suggested that the Russians were successful at influencing American voters.

How does Facebook, which prides itself on being able to process billions of data points and instantly transform them into personal connections for its users, somehow not make the connection that electoral ads, paid for in roubles, were coming from Russian Federation?

Stretch said he was "trying to answer the question".

Facebook had earlier turned over more than 3,000 advertisements linked to the agency. That was after Stretch said he would have to get back to the committee.

The companies drew ridicule Tuesday from Democratic Sen.

"Our claims were frankly blown off by the leadership of your companies", Sen Warner said.

"Candidly, your companies know more about Americans in many ways than the United States government does, and the idea that you had no idea that any of this was happening strains my credibility", Warner said.



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