Snapchat claims it has found at least a partial solution to “fake news.” Snap, the Los Angeles-based parent of the image messaging app, recently announced it would separate social material from media. So, has Snap hit upon a solution to “fake news”? Not exactly. Snap’s redesign is not a game-changer.Read More
Last week, Eric Schmidt, executive chairman of Alphabet, Google’s parent company, caused a stir by suggesting publicly that the search giant would seek to “de-rank” Russia’s main international television service and a prominent Russian news website. RT, the television service, and Sputnik, the website, have been implicated by U.S. intelligence agencies in the Kremlin’s far-reaching attempt to meddle in the 2016 U.S. presidential election.
British Prime Minister Theresa May helpfully reminded us that Russia’s politically motivated online disinformation constitutes a threat to human rights. But May missed an opportunity to issue a challenge to the social media and search platforms that Russian operatives and others have used to disseminate harmful content online.Read More
YouTube has taken a narrow but important step to protect its users and society at large from dangerous content online. The world’s most popular digital video site has markedly reduced its inventory of taped sermons delivered by the late terrorist recruiter Anwar al-Awlaki, the New York Times reported on Nov. 12.Read More
A new Venezuelan law clamping down on social media and broadcast organizations demonstrates in extreme fashion the dangers of government regulation of online content. The measure requires operators of social media sites such as Facebook or Twitter to remove hateful posts immediately, with potential punishments of 10 to 20 years in prison for those who violate the law.Read More