Executive order seeks to give FCC, FTC authority over social media content

The White House has apparently drafted an executive order that would give the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) the authority to influence regulations on how social media companies like Facebook obtain and post content to their sites and compel the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to apply those policies during any probes of those companies.

The summary of the nascent order, which a CNN report said is titled "Protecting Americans from Online Censorship," includes accounts of social media bias in political content, specifically the censorship of some opinions. President Trump last month told right wing social media activists that he would "explore all regulatory and legislative solutions to protect free speech."

A White House official cited in a Politico report that first revealed the order’s existence said, social media companies “have a role, if not a responsibility, to monitor the content on their sites to ensure that people aren’t threatened with violence or worse, and at the same time to provide a platform that protects and cherishes freedom and free speech, but at the same time does not allow it to descend into a platform for hate.”

The draft met with criticism from the National Hispanic Media Coalition (NHMC) whose president and CEO, Alex Nogales, called it “dangerous and outrageous because it would give the Trump administration the broad freedom of dictating and policing what speech is allowed on the internet.”

The president has long complained that social media companies unfairly target and censor conservative voices.

Get daily email updates

SC Media's daily must-read of the most current and pressing daily news

By clicking the Subscribe button below, you agree to SC Media Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy.