Pew Research center has released the results of
a new poll that shows Americans of both parties do not support
limitations on internet freedoms in order to fight so-called “false
info” on social media.
majority (58 percent) of Americans agreed with the statement that
“freedom of information should be protected,” even if means “false info
can be published.” This included a majority (57 percent) of Democrats.
39 percent said that the U.S. government should “take steps to reduce
false info online, even if it limits freedom of info.”
were more supportive (56 percent) of tech companies doing so — largely
thanks to 60 percent of Democrats supporting tech companies’ crackdowns.
A majority of Republican participants also opposed tech companies
limiting freedom of information.
to censorship of social media by both the government and tech companies
was particularly strong among younger generations. 66 percent of the
18-29 demographic opposed the government restricting freedom of
information to fight “false info,” and 56 percent of the same
demographic opposed tech companies doing so.
compared to an even split among the 65-plus generation on government
censorship. The 65-plus demo also supported tech companies limiting
freedom of information by 64 percent, as did the 50-64 age demographic.
was also a gender gap — 10 percent more men than women said the
government should not restrict freedom of information to fight “false
info,” although a slim majority (53 percent) of women agreed.
House Judiciary Committee will hold a session next
week on the subject of social media censorship. Rep. Marsha Blackburn
(R-TN), one of the leading voices on the issue, will give evidence. So
will Diamond & Silk, the pro-Trump internet duo whose censorship by
Facebook became national news during the Zuckerberg hearings last week.
Representatives from the Electronic Frontier Foundation (EFF), Google,
Facebook, and Twitter have also been invited.