FCC Chairman Starts Section 230 Action Against Big Tech Over Election Interference

(TheFreedomFlag.com)- FCC Chairman Ajit Pai announced on Thursday that he was pushing forward with new rulemaking plans to stop Big Tech and social media giants asserting an anti-conservative bias and interfering in elections. The announcement comes after Facebook and Twitter both decided to censor a story published by the New York Post that alleged Hunter Biden, the son of Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden, used his father’s position as vice president to make lucrative business deals.

Pai intends to clarify the meaning of Section 230, a piece of Internet legislation that provides immunity from liability for social media giants. The legislation provides that Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, and other social media platforms are not treated as publishers and are therefore not liable for comments made by users.

However, the repeated censorship of conservatives on the platforms has drawn criticism over the years, with many suggesting that the companies have effectively become publishers that promote particular political and ideological narratives.

In a statement, FCC Chairman Pai said that he was moving to clarify the meaning of the legislation after members of all three branches of the federal government “expressed serious concerns about the prevailing interpretation of the immunity set forth in Section 230 of the Communications Act.”

“There is bipartisan support in Congress to reform the law. The U.S. Department of Commerce has petitioned the Commission to ‘clarify ambiguities in section 230,’” he added. “And earlier this week, U.S. Supreme Court Justice Clarence Thomas pointed out that courts have relief upon ‘policy and purpose arguments to grant sweeping protections to Internet platforms’ that appear to go far beyond the actual text of the provision.”

Pai said that as those elected officials consider whether now is the time to change the law, the question of what Section 230 currently means must be asked. He explained how many use an “overly broad” interpretation that, in some cases, shield social media companies from normal consumer protection laws, despite this having no basis in Section 230.

HE SAID THAT THE Commission’s General Counsel informed him that the FCC has the authority to interpret Section 230 and that he intends to move forward with a rulemaking the would clarify the meaning.

Clarifying the meaning of the legislation could mean that Facebook and Twitter are either forced to change their current policies and practice, or face lawsuits.

Pai said that in his time in the FCC he has “favored regularity parity, transparency, and free expression” and that he believes in protecting the First Amendment right to free speech for social media companies, but also respects that they do not have a right to special immunity that is not afforded to media outlets, broadcasters, and newspapers.

This could spell trouble for Big Tech.