FRC hosts forum on how to regain freedom of speech back from FaceBook and Google
A big question facing lawmakers and public policy experts today is, “Does the internet require government regulation, and if so, how much?”
VIDEO: [Family Research Council] Panel discussion on ‘Who owns Free Speech on the Internet?’
A panel of experts gathered at the Family Research Council’s (FRC) Washington headquarters on Tuesday to grapple with those questions. The panel included Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Craig Parshall, and Brent Skorup. They paid particular attention to the fading online presence of conservatives and Christians.
“The entire digital ecosystem is now in the hands of a few very powerful tech companies that have declared themselves arbiters of truth,” pointed out moderator Sarah Perry, “and after losses in the 2016 elections, find themselves with an ideological bone to pick.”
Mark Zuckerberg’s testimony “may be finished on Capitol Hill, but Facebook’s new algorithm disproportionately impacts conservatives,” declared a statement from FRC. “Google and YouTube are using the SPLC as a ‘trusted flagger’ for offensive content. The internet leans further left each day.”
Answers from conservative experts about regulating the internet do not align neatly and are sometimes surprising. While greater regulation has instant appeal to those who feel slighted––if not oppressed––by the content gatekeepers of Silicon Valley’s Online Tech Giants, in the end increased regulation might not be in the best interest of Christians and conservatives.
“Be careful what you wish for,” warned panelist Brent Skorup, Senior Research Fellow in the Technology Policy Program at the Mercatus Center at George Mason University. He added, “because it might not turn out the way you had hoped.”
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