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Wyden Denounces Trump's Expected Action Against Social Media

US Customs & Border Patrol; US State Dept; Twitter.com

President Trump’s furor over Twitter linking fact-checking articles to his tweets over mail-in voter fraud has reached a new phase.

Today, Trump is expected to issue an executive order targeting Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act.  The law will order the FCC and FTC to roll back liability protections for tech companies, which would include social media platforms.

Among the critics of the president’s actions is U.S. Senator Ron Wyden. The Oregon Democrat says Trump is targeting those who’d hold him accountable for false and misleading statements.

“Section 230 was written because it protects private businesses’ right not to have to play host to his lies," Wyden tells KLCC.  He and California Republican Senator Chris Cox wrote the legislation in 1996.

President Trump's recent tweet on mail-in ballots prompted Twitter to tag his claims with fact-checking articles.

"And that was the value of it, it provides the tools to make sure that you can moderate content that’s really just a pure lie.”

Twitter’s action on Trump’s voter fraud tweet follows widespread criticism of its allowing the president to repeat a baseless murder conspiracy theoryagainst former Republican Congressman Joe Scarborough.

Copyright 2020, KLCC.

Brian Bull is an assistant professor of journalism at the University of Oregon, and remains a contributor to the KLCC news department. He began working with KLCC in June 2016.   In his 27+ years as a public media journalist, he's worked at NPR, Twin Cities Public Television, South Dakota Public Broadcasting, Wisconsin Public Radio, and ideastream in Cleveland. His reporting has netted dozens of accolades, including four national Edward R. Murrow Awards (22 regional),  the Ohio Associated Press' Best Reporter Award, Best Radio Reporter from  the Native American Journalists Association, and the PRNDI/NEFE Award for Excellence in Consumer Finance Reporting.
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