Content Moderation

11/10/2020

Twitter, Facebook face rocky future post-Donald Trump

Carl Szabo
Carl Szabo Vice President and General Counsel

“If you were seeking perfection, then you had unrealistic expectations,” said Carl Szabo, vice president of NetChoice, an industry group that represents Facebook and Twitter.

“I see few complaints that could actually be lodged against social media platforms for how they addressed and dealt with this unprecedented scenario,” Szabo told CQ Roll Call. “And I think you’ll get the same takeaway for most Americans.”

Szabo expects the companies to continue taking flak from lawmakers on both sides of the aisle, starting with a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing next Tuesday where Mark Zuckerberg, Facebook’s chief executive officer, and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey are scheduled to testify.

“Some lawmakers will ignore the amazing successes we saw over the past week and instead zero in on edge-case errors,” he said.

When it comes to overhauling Section 230, the technology industry is counting on the fact that Republicans and Democrats are approaching the debate from radically different starting points.

But Biden’s call for a full repeal is still a threat, and Szabo said he hopes the next administration will temper its Section 230 position.

“I would hope that an administration centered on notions of free speech and giving voices to those without a voice would wholeheartedly and enthusiastically embrace Section 230 and the role it plays in enabling everyday Americans to have a voice,” he said.

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