Cristiano Lima

In rare show of force, senators enlist U.S. marshals to subpoena tech CEOs

A Senate panel announced Monday it subpoenaed the CEOs of Elon Musk’s X, Discord and Snap to testify at a hearing on children’s online safety next month after “repeated refusals” by the tech companies to cooperate with its investigation into the matter. The move marks a major escalation by lawmakers probing how social media platforms may harm children’s mental health, an area of broad bipartisan interest on Capitol Hill. The committee announced that it also expects Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg and TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew to appear voluntarily.

Tech leaders including Musk, Zuckerberg call for government action on AI

Powerful tech leaders—including Tesla CEO Elon Musk and Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg—expressed unanimous agreement that the government needs to intervene to avert the potential pitfalls of artificial intelligence (AI). However, there was little apparent consensus about what a congressional framework should look like to govern AI, as companies forge ahead amid a tense industry arms race. Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-NY) said Congress’s “difficult job” ahead will be finding ways to enhance the benefits of the technology while minimizing its risks. But Sen.

Twitter gutted its policy team. Some of the band is getting back together

Over a dozen former executives who led Twitter’s public policy team are launching a new political advisory group, taking the practically unheard of step of reuniting en masse after the company, since-rebranded X, shed much of its own shop under Elon Musk. The newly minted Blue Owl Group, a nod to Twitter’s once-iconic bird logo, is stacked with longtime tech veterans looking to use the new perch to shape major debates about the internet, artificial intelligence and climate — while recapturing the company’s sensibilities. While the firm includes several veterans like Colin Crowell who left T

Biden's internet affordability battle looms

President Joe Biden likened the importance of internet access to that of public utilities like “electricity or water.” “But, but, but, but,” President Biden added, “It’s not enough to have access. You need affordability in addition to access.” Biden’s remarks nodded to a key affordability initiative that could soon run out of funds — a looming battle that could shape the outcome of his plans to bring “internet for all.” The president highlighted the Affordable Connectivity Program (ACP).

Republican presidential contenders are taking aim at Silicon Valley

Governor Ron DeSantis (R-FL) signed into law a so-called “digital bill of rights” aimed at giving residents more control of their data, boosting children’s protections online, and barring social networks from coordinating with government officials to “censor” speech. It marked the latest broadside from a Republican presidential contender against Silicon Valley, which is poised to be a significant target as the 2024 campaign heats up.

How the FCC may be forced to grapple with AI, too

The Federal Communications Commission — which has jurisdiction over radio, television, cable, and satellites —  isn’t best known for grappling with cutting-edge technology. But amid the rise of generative AI tools like ChatGPT and Midjourney, the communications regulator may be forced to tackle artificial intelligence, an area that’s beginning to intersect with

Big Tech-funded groups try to kill bills to protect children online

Federal efforts to pass children’s online safety protections have languished amid disagreements between House and Senate leaders about which proposals to rally around.

GOP debt plan would hurt internet access efforts, Democrats say

Democratic officials are expressing concern that the House Republican debt limit plan would undermine bipartisan efforts to boost internet access nationwide and secure U.S.

Gigi Sohn speaks out on bitter FCC confirmation brawl for first time

For over a year, [Benton Senior Fellow and Public Advocate] Gigi Sohn stayed relatively silent as she faced a barrage of attacks over her nomination to the Federal Communications Commission, which had languished in the Senate since President Joe Biden tapped her in October 2021.

Google conducting civil rights review, caving to years of pressure

Apparently, Google has quietly tapped an outside law firm to review how its services and policies impact civil rights and racial equity, following years of pressure from advocates and Democratic lawmakers to conduct such an assessment. The civil rights audit has been months in the making and is set to examine how the company’s diversity and inclusion policies and approach to content moderation may affect marginalized communities, including at its subsidiary YouTube.