Dems Seek COVID-19 Disinformation Reports From Big Tech

Top House Democrats have told the top social media sites they want monthly reports on how they are dealing with COVID-19-related disinformation and briefings to discuss what information they will produce in those reports. 

Facebook, Google and Twitter reportedly agreed to provide such reports to the European Commission, so the Dems want equal time for the home team, as it were. 

That request came in a letter to Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg, Google CEO Sundar Pichai and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey from Energy & Commerce Committee Chairman Frank Pallone (D-N.J.), Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee Chair Diana DeGette (D-Colo.), Communications Subcommittee Chairman Mike Doyle (D-Pa.), and Consumer Protection and Commerce Subcommittee Chair Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.). 

It also comes in response to what the legislators say has been a "troubling rise" in "false or misleading information related to COVID-19 disseminated by domestic and foreign actors on platforms such as [theirs]." That includes "unsubstantiated assertions about masks and vaccines." 

They say such disinformation is dangerous.

John Eggerton

Contributing editor John Eggerton has been an editor and/or writer on media regulation, legislation and policy for over four decades, including covering the FCC, FTC, Congress, the major media trade associations, and the federal courts. In addition to Multichannel News and Broadcasting + Cable, his work has appeared in Radio World, TV Technology, TV Fax, This Week in Consumer Electronics, Variety and the Encyclopedia Britannica.