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FCC chairman says he'll seek to regulate social media under Trump's executive order

October 15, 2020. Summarized by summa-bot.

The Federal Communications Commission will draft regulations intended for social media companies following a petition earlier this year by the Trump administration, the agency's chairman said Thursday.

(CNN Business)The Federal Communications Commission will draft regulations intended for social media companies following a petition earlier this year by the Trump administration, the agency's chairman said Thursday.

In a tweet, FCC Chairman Ajit Pai indicated he will move forward with a rulemaking to "clarify" Section 230 of the Communications Act of 1934, which currently acts as a legal shield for tech companies' handling of user generated content.

The move could inflame a national debate over the law, which has been spurred by numerous conservative complaints that tech platforms are systematically biased against right-wing views.

Pai said the FCC's general counsel had informed him that the agency has the legal authority to issue regulations interpreting Section 230.

"Social media companies have a First Amendment right to free speech," Pai added.

In May, Trump signed an executive order that called on the FCC to develop rules interpreting Section 230.

Opponents of the order, including some sitting FCC commissioners, have said doing so would break from the agency's historical practice of avoiding direct regulation of the internet.

On social media, Trump has called for Section 230 to be repealed.

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