WASHINGTON, January 28, 2020 – Are Americans better or worse off since the disinformation debacle on social media in the 2016 election year? The question is a tech-focused echo of the quadrennial refrain said by presidential candidates. It was asked by the moderator at a panel discussion of social media and democracy at the State of the Net on Tuesday.
Each panelist agreed that there have been both improvements and new challenges since the 2016 election.
Camille François, chief innovation officer for Graphika, said that since the United States recognized the Russian trolls four years ago, many more actors now engage with misinformation agendas, including domestic trolls.
Federal Election Commissioner Ellen Weintraub said the leading tech platforms have each taken a different approach to tackling misinformation. Twitter, she said, has decided to not allow political advertising. But there are still complicated nuances around Twitter’s staunch ban, said Weintraub.
Weintraub sees serious issues with Facebook’s microtargeting marketing approach. Weintraub’s concern is the elimination of counter speech through microtargeting. If a platform user cannot see the misinformation available, then the user cannot counter it, said Weintraub.
Weintraub believes microtargeting advertisements have “the potential to magnify and amplify misinformation” instead of dispelling or negating it.
Annenberg Public Policy Center Distinguished Fellow Susan Ness said that while the situation has improved on some levels, “people now have far less trust in their institutions.”
François said it was difficult to define misinformation and calculate it. Indeed, she said, recognizing the danger of misinformation in an election and knowing who the actors are and how they organize their pursuits is of the utmost importance.
Weintraub said that no single entity could be delegated with the task of defining truth. Rather, Weintraub said that there needs to be a system for dealing with the material that is “just egregiously untrue, egregiously harmful.”
- Air Force Aims to Expand 5G Capabilities to All Bases, According to CTO Frank Konieczny
- European Commission Aims to Build AI Regulatory Systems Based on European Values
- Tech Companies Delay Reopening, Facial Recognition Lawsuit, Facebook Privacy Policies
- Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai Calls for Expanding Telehealth Initiatives
- Breakfast Media Minute: July 15, 2020
Signup for Broadband Breakfast
Artificial Intelligence4 weeks ago
Brookings Panelists Emphasize Importance of Addressing Biases in Artificial Intelligence Technology
Artificial Intelligence2 weeks ago
U.S. State Department Employing Artificial Intelligence Against COVID-19 Misinformation
Broadband Roundup2 weeks ago
Artificial Intelligence Task Force, State Cybersecurity, ADTRAN Offers Rural Funding Guidance
#broadbandlive4 weeks ago
Broadband Breakfast Live Online on Wednesday, June 17, 2020 – Federal Broadband Funds and Opportunity Zones
Education3 weeks ago
A Mix of Resources and Technologies Are Needed to Close the Homework Gap
Fiber1 month ago
Bandwidth Demands Project 10 Gigabit Network Capabilities Required Next Decade
5G1 week ago
Verizon CEO Hans Vestberg Describes 5G-to-the-Home Vision, Claiming U.S. Leads in 5G Deployment
House of Representatives3 weeks ago
Witnesses Blame Social Media Algorithms for Spread of Misinformation