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Quigley Statement on Intel Open Hearing with Tech Companies

Nov 1, 2017
Press Release

WASHINGTON – Today, Representative Mike Quigley (IL-05), who serves on the House Intelligence Committee, released the below statement following the Committee’s open hearing with tech companies:

“There is no question that we need to ensure social media advertisements are held to the same standard as those on television and radio, and that that benchmark needs to be set and strengthened across mediums. However, while there has been a major focus on paid ads on social media, today I also asked Facebook, Twitter, and Google about their role in addressing the free weaponization of misinformation on their platforms. Oftentimes, after fake accounts are pulled down, the fake stories generated by these accounts have already been spread thousands of times and continue to be circulated by legitimate users, whether it be everyday Americans, Fox News hosts, or the President of the United States. These fake stories live long after a fake account is removed. Appreciating the First Amendment right to free speech, the social media leaders in the room today still need to play an active role in flagging disinformation spread by verified, influential users. Serving as a platform for free expression comes with responsibility, and I welcome the opportunity for a coordinated government and industry response to address vulnerabilities that make our democracy susceptible to future attacks.”

During his line of questioning, Rep. Quigley raised a real-time example regarding algorithms used to push misinformation to the top of users’ feeds. You can watch his full line of questioning here