Taking power away from parents in a war on tech

Like many parents, I have real concerns on how best to raise my children in the digital age. There is no Dr. Spock book on raising a child in the 21st Century. I can’t ask my parents what they did when I wanted my first smartphone.

Even psychiatrists, pediatricians, and social workers can’t agree on the answers.

It is intimidating to be a parent today.

Read more at Springfield News-Leader

Taking Power Away From Parents in a War on Tech

Like many parents, I have real concerns on how best to raise my children in the digital age. There is no Dr. Spock book on raising a child in the 21st Century. I can’t ask my parents what they did when I wanted my first smartphone.  

Even psychiatrists, pediatricians, and social workers can’t agree on the answers.

It is intimidating to be a parent today.  

But one thing is clear, if parents and child experts don’t know what the answers are, we shouldn’t surrender control over how we raise our children to DC politicians and special interest groups.  

Not missing an opportunity to attack technology innovation, Senator Josh Hawley (R-MO) introduced legislation to seize control over how online services operate. Sounding like Helen Lovejoy from The Simpsons yelling, “won’t someone think of the children,” Sen. Hawley’s “Protecting Children from Online Predators Act” creates a parade of horribles, all part of the senator’s ongoing criticism of the tech industry. 

Read more at the Springfield News-Leader…

NetChoice Response to Andrew Yang’s Tech Proposals

Today, Presidential Candidate Andrew Yang released a slew of tech proposals, covering four main issues:

  • Privacy and Consumer Data
  • The Use of Technology, Especially by Young People
  • Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act
  • Antitrust Enforcement and Tech

Carl Szabo, Vice President and General Counsel at NetChoice pushed back on Yang’s proposals:

Privacy and Consumer Data

“The current online advertising model enables consumers to access high quality content and sophisticated services for free. Yang’s policy would create more paywalls around content and diminish the presence of free services.”

“On Yang’s internet we will have more paywalls and less content.”

“Americans support the current market structure. By a 3-to-1 margin Americans prefer online services to be funded by targeted advertising rather than paying for them directly.”

The Use of Technology, Especially by Young People

“The surge in access to technology and the internet in the 21st Century benefits us all every day – that’s why tech is so prevalent in society today.”

“For a candidate who claims to focus on “evidence-based policy,” Yang’s most outlandish claims lack evidence.”

“Rather than proposing knee-jerk policy responses to perceived problems, Yang should wait for more evidence on tech’s impact on children and not ignore a recent study that found no link between social media usage and negative impacts on mental health in teens.”

Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act

“We must dispel with this myth that because online services moderate user-created content, they are equivalent to the New York Times or the Washington Post. Unlike the journalists at the New York Times or Washington Post, Facebook doesn’t write posts and Twitter doesn’t write tweets — users do.

“The New York Times and the Washington Post’s comment section benefits from the same legal structure and protections as social media businesses.”

“Social media services moderate content to reduce the presence of hate speech, scams, and spam. Yang’s proposal to amend Section 230 would likely increase the amount of hate speech and terrorist content online.”

“Yang incorrectly claims a “publisher vs. platform grey area.” Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act does not categorize online services. Section 230 enables services that host user-created content to remove content without assuming liability.”

Antitrust Enforcement and Tech

“We welcome Yang’s recognition that breaking up tech businesses wouldn’t benefit consumers. The role of antitrust and regulation in the U.S. is to protect consumers, not competitors of successful businesses.”

U.S. Senator introduces a new Social Media Addiction Reduction Tech (SMART) Act that bans endless scrolling and autoplay

Packt

According to Bloomberg, Google and Facebook declined to comment. NetChoice, a trade group that counts both companies as members, said, “The goal of this bill is to make being online a less-enjoyable experience.”

Senator’s bill would ban YouTube, Facebook scrolls as addictive

The Business Times

Google and Facebook declined to comment. NetChoice, a trade group that counts both companies as members, said, “The goal of this bill is to make being online a less-enjoyable experience.”

Senator’s Bill Would Ban YouTube, Facebook Scrolls as Addictive

Bloomberg Quaint

Google and Facebook declined to comment. NetChoice, a trade group that counts both companies as members, said, “The goal of this bill is to make being online a less-enjoyable experience.

Hawley Introduces Plan to Prohibit Addictive Tech Practices

Washington Free Beacon

Hawley’s bill attracted immediate criticism from major tech firms. NetChoice, a trade association which represents e-commerce sites, claimed that the SMART Act would reduce social media sites’ usefulness and and enjoyability.

“This bill would reduce the power of consumers to make decisions for themselves and give that power to the government,” said Carl Szabo, NetChoice vice president and general counsel. “It’s our role to decide what online services and tools we use, not the government’s.”