Hill Schedules Hearing on Online Disinformation

The House Communications and Consumer Protection Subcommittees will hold a joint hearing on "Disinformation Online and a Country in Crisis." 

The date is June 24, but other details are to be determined, or at least revealed. 

The hearing was announced Thursday (June 11) by Energy & Commerce Committee chairman Frank Pallone (D-N.J.), Communications Subcommittee chair Mike Doyle (D-Pa.) and Consumer Protection Subcommittee chair Jan Schakowsky (D-Ill.). 

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The crisis is both COVID-19 and the current national reckoning, sometimes violent, over some police treatment of minorities. 

“Social media platforms have failed to take sufficient steps to address disinformation while the President is actively promoting dangerous falsehoods and conspiracies," said the legislators. "The country needs and deserves better, and we look forward to hearing from experts on what can be done to minimize, and ultimately end, the spread of dangerous disinformation and misinformation online.” 

While Facebook has declined to get into political speech, Twitter has labeled Tweets of President Donald Trump about absentee ballots, and shielded Trump's tweet about shooting looters. 

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.