Twitter chief Jack Dorsey received harsh support from Republicans who accused him of censorship when he appeared for a hearing in the Senate on Wednesday.
Together with Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg and Google CEO Sundar Pichai, Dorsey was summoned for a hearing, originally to answer questions related to a law that in effect deprives them of responsibility for what users share on their platforms.
With the US election just one week away, the technology giants are accused, among other things, of spreading false news and propaganda from anonymous actors.
In the video above, Cruz asks Dorsey critical questions.
When they tag or remove content, they are also exposed to accusations of politically motivated censorship, including from President Donald Trump and Republicans accusing them of being left-wing.
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The Democrats, for their part, demand that they do more to prevent the spread of disinformation and wild conspiracy theories.
“My concern is that these platforms have become powerful judges of what is true and what content users should have access to,” the chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, Republican Roger Wicker, said during Wednesday’s video-broadcast hearing.
According to Wicker, there are “dozens of examples of conservative content being censored”, and he demanded answers to the criteria on which the labeling or removal of content is based.
“Your platforms give foreign dictators the opportunity to spread propaganda without restrictions, while you routinely place restrictions on the President of the United States,” Wicker said.
Republican Ted Cruz got really upset during the hearing and came up with several loud outbursts against the Twitter boss.
“Who the hell chose you, Mr. Dorsey, and gave you the authority to decide what the media is allowed to report and the American people have the right to hear,” Cruz shouted during one of the outcomes.
He referred, among other things, to Twitter’s decision to restrict access to a controversial article in the New York Post, in which the son of Democratic presidential candidate Joe Biden is accused of corruption. There are strong doubts about the content of the article, which, among other things, the Wall Street Journal chose not to look up.
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Dorsey said it was wrong to block the link to the newspaper article and that the decision was therefore reversed.
– We realize that we have to work harder to gain trust, he said.
Cruz also sharply criticized Google during the hearing, accusing the search engine company of “manipulating search results to influence and change election results.”
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Trump also threw himself into Wednesday’s debate with one Twitter message where he just accused Twitter of covering up what he refers to as Joe Biden’s corruption.
“This is the biggest and most credible story of all in the world,” Trump claimed.