[Commentary] We are in a brave new world. Facebook and 'Big Tech' have contributed to the erosion of our democratic discourse. We need to have these new titans assume responsibilities on par to the influence they have over our information ecosystem. We need to address this bug in our democracy. Short-term policy solutions can help curb some of Facebook’s harmful effects, but the larger task before policymakers -- and all of us -- is to critically examine the long-term health of our democratic discourse.
[Commentary] Is it time to recognize that Facebook, and ‘Big Tech’ at large, may be a bug in our democracy? In Part 1, I examined how the Facebook-Cambridge Analytica story illustrates the harmful effects of “Surveillance Capitalism.” The erosion of our privacy is contributing to the declining health of our democratic discourse. Moreover though, Facebook has facilitated the proliferation of hate speech, fake news, and international electoral interference.
[Commentary] The big Internet service provider gate-keepers may have bought the silence of Congress, but they cannot buy the silence of the people. We know there is overwhelming popular support for an open internet with strong net neutrality rules. But we have to demonstrate this support and the power behind it. We must make our voices heard. Contacting Congress now on the CRA is vital—your Senators, of course, but your House members, too. Tell them your vote in the next election depends on their vote now to restore net neutrality.
In the early years of the 20th Century, Louis Brandeis was America’s most influential advocate for antitrust enforcement but his contributions to antitrust have been much debated ever since.
[Editorial] The Benton Foundation has joined literally hundreds of organizations that are asking the Federal Communications Commission to ensure Lifeline voice and broadband service for low-income households, with minimal disruption to the people who depend on the program for a consistent connection to the world via their telephone or internet connection. We're asking that the FCC:
[Commentary] How can we improve the biggest tool to closing the digital divide in the Federal Communications Commission’s toolbox: the Connect America Fund. Back in 2011, the FCC adopted a performance goal for the Connect America Fund of ensuring universal access to fixed broadband and concluded it would measure progress towards this outcome based on the number of newly served locations — but it did not articulate any concrete vision for when this universal service goal might be achieved.
January 20, 2018 marks the one-year anniversary of Donald Trump’s inauguration. Last week, we documented the Federal Communications Commission’s policy priorities of the past year. This week, we look at President Trump’s war with the press. One of the greatest concerns going into the Trump Presidency was how his Administration would interact with the press. Just eight days into the Trump administration, we published The First Casualty is the Truth: Trump's Running War With the Media, which described the first combative week of the President Trump-press relationship.
On the same day the Federal Communications Commission voted to repeal its 2015 network neutrality rules, the Walt Disney Company announced a deal to buy most of 21st Century Fox. The all-stock transaction is valued at roughly $52.4 billion. If approved, Disney would go from being “a juggernaut to being a megajuggernaut.” Disney hopes the acquisition of Fox’s sports and entertainment content will give it new market power in the growing online distribution market (streaming services). The FCC’s move is not unrelated.