Send a Tweet
Most Popular Choices
Share on Facebook Share on Twitter Share on LinkedIn Share on Reddit Tell A Friend Printer Friendly Page Save As Favorite View Favorites
OpEdNews Op Eds

If Facebook hides conservative news, a Senate inquiry is a bad idea

By       Message Trevor Timm       (Page 1 of 1 pages)     Permalink    (# of views)   2 comments

Related Topic(s): ; ; , Add Tags
Add to My Group(s)

Must Read 1   Inspiring 1   Valuable 1  
View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com Headlined to H4 5/11/16

Author 87840
Become a Fan
  (2 fans)
- Advertisement -

Reprinted from The Guardian

The Senate commerce committee's inquiry into Facebook's editorial decisions is a threat to their first amendment rights

Facebook
Facebook
(Image by chriscorneschi)
  Permission   Details   DMCA
- Advertisement -

Many people were rightly disturbed earlier this week when Gizmodo revealed that Facebook employees allegedly suppressed conservative news stories on the whim of their employer's political leanings. As alarming as that story is, a new congressional investigation into Facebook for those editorial choices is arguably worse.

Gizmodo's Michael Nunez provoked a firestorm of criticism towards Facebook on Monday when he reported that a former Facebook staffer accused its news team of refusing to include conservative news outlets like Breitbart and RedState in its influential "trending news" section on the front page -- which generates huge traffic for those outlets included. Even if you despise the likes of Breitbart and RedState, the idea of such a dominant corporation controlling what you do and don't see online should alarm people of all political persuasions.

- Advertisement -

But now Republicans on the Senate commerce committee have opened an inquiry into Facebook's editorial decisions, which encroaches on the first amendment in a way that represents a clear and present danger to their free speech.

There is no question that Facebook's unprecedented power over the distribution of news is increasingly disturbing. According to a recent study of major news publishers, Facebook now accounts for over 40% of all traffic that comes to news sites. Facebook is now pushing news organizations to publish directly onto its platform by prioritizing traffic to those outlets who agree to its terms. And news organizations are regularly forced to spend large sums of money to reach Facebook users who already have "liked" a news organization page to actually see its content in their news feeds.

If Facebook so chooses, it could do the same to any news organization, and this has serious implications for the future of news in an era when the industry is already in decline. It's a situation that news organizations have to grapple with and the public should be fully conscious of.

- Advertisement -

Click Here to Read Whole Article

 

- Advertisement -

Must Read 1   Inspiring 1   Valuable 1  
View Ratings | Rate It

opednews.com

Trevor Timm is a co-founder and the executive director of the Freedom of the Press Foundation. He is a writer, activist, and lawyer who specializes in free speech and government transparency issues. He has contributed to  The (more...)
 

Share on Google Plus Submit to Twitter Add this Page to Facebook! Share on LinkedIn Pin It! Add this Page to Fark! Submit to Reddit Submit to Stumble Upon Share Author on Social Media   Go To Commenting

The views expressed herein are the sole responsibility of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of this website or its editors.

Writers Guidelines

Contact AuthorContact Author Contact EditorContact Editor Author PageView Authors' Articles
Related Topic(s): ; ; , Add Tags

Most Popular Articles by this Author:     (View All Most Popular Articles by this Author)

Sen. Dianne Feinstein's New NSA Bill Will Codify and Extend Mass Surveillance of Americans

Everyone loves Bernie Sanders. Except, it seems, the Democratic party

DOJ Investigation of AP Part of Larger Pattern to Intimidate Sources and Reporters

Why the Panama Papers should be a US election issue

If Trump leaks are OK and Clinton leaks aren't, there's a problem

One good thing about Donald Trump's campaign: it's ruining Jeb Bush's