When U.S. President Joe Biden criticized Facebook in July for “killing people” by spreading vaccine lies, many experts saw the start of a White House fight against misinformation. But why has the White House suddenly gone quiet?
After insulting Facebook on July 16, Biden never again publicly accused Facebook or any other platform of spreading misinformation. To date, Biden has given 24 speeches on COVID-19 since he called out Facebook, according to Reuters analysts.
Interviews with 11 White House sources, experts, and researchers show that senior White House officials believe that the U.S. president has limited legal options to compel social media platforms to comply. Moreover, the U.S. government remains unable to find an effective strategy to contain the social media giants.
The White House has also issued no executive order or declaration to combat misinformation, though it has issued nearly three dozen executive orders and proclamations on other pandemic issues.
Moreover, a handful of misinformation carriers identified by the government and the Center for Countering Digital Hate in 2021 still have more than 40 accounts on Facebook, YouTube, and other social media platforms that still have millions of followers.
In addition, Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act protects social media companies from being responsible for what users post on their platforms.
After all, technology companies were among the top donors during Biden’s presidential campaign, with former Silicon Valley insiders now occupying key positions in the administration.
For more information, read the original story in Reuters.