Election 2016

Reps. Square Off at Hearing Over Online Censorship

House Communications Subcommittee Chairman Marsha Blackburn (R-TN) and Rep James Hines (D-CT) testified before the House Judiciary Committee about alleged online censorship of conservative speech. The hearing was on "Filtering Practices of Social Media Platforms" and stemmed in part from Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg's testimony before Congress recently.  The first two panelists were members of Congress, and as such only presented statements and were not questioned afterward.

Cambridge Analytica whistleblower: Steve Bannon used data to discourage Democratic turnout

Cambridge Analytica whistleblower Christopher Wylie told House Democrats that former Trump campaign strategist Steve Bannon used the firm's research to discourage Democrats from voting in the 2016 election. Democrats from the House Judiciary Committee and the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee asked Wylie whether Bannon had specifically talked about voter disenfranchisement or disengagement. "Yes," Wylie responded, according to the transcript released by the Democrats.

News organizations seek access to Mueller materials in Russia investigation

A coalition of news organizations asked a federal court to unseal materials used by special counsel Robert S. Mueller III to obtain search warrants in his investigation of President Donald Trump’s former campaign chairman Paul Manafort and others indicted in the probe of Russian interference in the 2016 election. The news organizations are seeking to compel disclosure of affidavits, records of seizures and the warrants themselves that Mueller filed in bringing indictments against such figures as Manafort and former national security adviser Michael Flynn, among others.

Facebook willingly handed over data to the man it now blames for the Cambridge Analytica scandal

Facebook handed over data, with no strings attached, to the man it now blames for the Cambridge Analytica scandal. That was the testimony Aleksandr Kogan — the data scientist behind the app that harvested information from 87 million Facebook accounts — gave to a committee of lawmakers in Britain on April 24.

Professor Apologizes for Helping Cambridge Analytica Harvest Facebook Data

Aleksandr Kogan, the academic who was hired by Cambridge Analytica to harvest information from tens of millions of Facebook profiles, defended his role in the data collection, saying he was upfront about how the information would be used and that he “never heard a word” of objection from Facebook. Yet Kogan, 28, a psychology professor who has found himself cast as the villain by both Cambridge Analytica and Facebook, expressed regret for his role in the data mining, which took place in 2014. “Back then, we thought it was fine. Right now my opinion has really been changed,” he said.

Democratic Party files lawsuit alleging Russia, the Trump campaign and WikiLeaks conspired to disrupt the 2016 campaign

The Democratic National Committee filed a multimillion-dollar lawsuit against the Russian government, the Trump campaign and the WikiLeaks organization alleging a far-reaching conspiracy to disrupt the 2016 campaign and tilt the election to Donald Trump.  The complaint, filed in federal district court in Manhattan, alleges that top Trump campaign officials conspired with the Russian government and its military spy agency to hurt Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton and help Trump by hacking the computer networks of the Democratic Party and disseminating stolen material found ther

The National Enquirer, a Trump Rumor, and Another Secret Payment to Buy Silence

Late in 2015, a former Trump Tower doorman named Dino Sajudin met with a reporter from American Media, Inc., the publisher of the National Enquirer, at a McDonald’s in Pennsylvania. A few weeks earlier, Sajudin had signed a contract with A.M.I., agreeing to become a source and to accept thirty thousand dollars for exclusive rights to information he had been told: that Donald Trump, who had launched his Presidential campaign five months earlier, may have fathered a child with a former employee in the late nineteen-eighties. Sajudin declined to comment for this story.

Investigators Focus on Another Trump Ally: The National Enquirer

President Trump has long had ties to the nation’s major media players. But his connections with the country’s largest tabloid publisher, American Media Inc., run deeper than most. A former top executive of Trump’s casino business sits on AMI’s four-member board of directors, and an adviser joined the media company after the election. The company’s chairman, David J. Pecker, is a close friend of the president’s.

Mark Zuckerberg Testifies on Facebook Before Skeptical Lawmakers

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg's appearance before Congress turned into something of a pointed gripe session, with both Democratic and Republican senators attacking Facebook for failing to protect users’ data and stop Russian election interference, and raising questions about whether Facebook should be more heavily regulated. Of specific interest were the revelations that sensitive data of as many as 87 million Facebook users were harvested without explicit permission by a political consulting firm, Cambridge Analytica, which was connected to the Trump campaign.

What the government could actually do about Facebook

As Mark Zuckerberg appears before Congress, a look at what lawmakers can and can’t do about Facebook.