A look at the various media used to reach and inform voters during elections -- as well as the impact of new media and media ownership on elections.
Elections and Media
Apparently, the Trump administration is pressuring Republican Senators to ratchet up scrutiny of social media companies it sees as biased against conservatives in the run-up to the Nov 2020 election. In recent weeks, the White House has pressed Senate Republican leaders on key committees to hold public hearings on the law that protects Facebook, Twitter and other internet companies from lawsuits over how they treat user posts. And action is following.
The Federal Communications Commission could look very different next year, even if President Donald Trump is reelected. If President Trump wins a second term, industry observers believe the agency will push ahead with the administration's desire to reform a prized legal shield for content moderation on online platforms and remain focused on expanding rural broadband policies.
If Democratic Presidential nominee Joe Biden gets elected, policy experts expect him to choose a new Federal Communications Commission. The term of the current FCC Chairman Ajit Pai does not end until Jan 2023, but FCC chairmen typically exit the commission before a new president takes office.
The report begins with an overview of each candidate’s general philosophy on technology, innovation, and trade policy, and then compares the candidates’ policy positions across 10 specific issue areas:
- Innovation and Research and Development (R&D)
- Internet and Digital Economy
- Broadband and Telecommunications
- Education and Skills
- Advanced Manufacturing
- Life Sciences and Biotechnology
- Clean Energy Innovation
The candidates’ positions on broadband:
One might be excused for thinking that by now, more than 200 years after the first disputed presidential election, our forebears or ourselves would have stepped up to the issue and put in place the mechanics necessary to allow a democratic nation to hold a democratic election.
Facebook has said it will take aggressive and exceptional measures to “restrict the circulation of content” on its platform if Nov’s presidential election descends into chaos or violent civic unrest. Nick Clegg, the company’s head of global affairs, said it had drawn up plans for how to handle a range of outcomes, including widespread civic unrest or “the political dilemmas” of having in-person votes counted more rapidly than mail-in ballots, which will play a larger role in this election due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The tech world will be holding its breath to see whether President Donald Trump can pull out a victory.
As the country’s most powerful newsmaker and the person in charge of a government that’s been aggressively pursuing antitrust cases against big tech companies, President Donald Trump does have leverage over Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg. So the chief executive officer could be forgiven for flattering President Trump.
Powerful technology companies are expected to face increased scrutiny no matter who wins the Nov. 3 election, but President Donald Trump and challenger Joe Biden differ on some of the problems posed by Big Tech and how to solve them. President Trump and his appointees likely would maintain—and possibly accelerate—the broad-scale regulatory scrutiny of technology companies that marked his first term.
Top House Democrats outlined aspirations to tackle broadband issues in 2021 under what they hope is President Joe Biden. “I promise you all we will restore net neutrality and make our broadband networks more competitive,” said Rep. Mike Doyle (D-PA), who chairs the House telecom subcommittee and envisions continuing to do so. If President Donald Trump wins re-election, the digital divide will widen, Chairman Doyle added.