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
Joe Biden has remained relatively quiet on tech. But here's a look at where he stands. On net neutrality, Biden hasn't said much. A spokesman for Biden's campaign said the former vice president is a supporter of strong net neutrality protections. But Biden's track record tells a different story.
Former Vice President Joe Biden’s stance on network neutrality has remained somewhat of an open question for more than a year as he’s become the front runner to take on President Donald Trump later in 2020. Questions about why Biden did not bring up the issue have been raised as other candidates have forcefully pushed their views during the Democratic primary. Many have even detailed exactly how they would restore a policy achievement made by a White House Biden was a part of.
The Donald Trump re-election campaign told TV stations they could lose their operating licenses for airing an ad criticizing the president’s actions in the coronavirus crisis -- a challenge that may be more bluster than actual threat. President Donald Trump’s campaign, in a letter on March 25, told stations in five battleground states to stop showing the ad from Priorities USA, a political action committee that supports Democratic candidate Joe Biden. Failure to remove the ad “could put your station’s license in jeopardy” before the Federal Communications Commission, the campaign said.
Twitter recently rolled out a new policy aimed at “manipulated media.” Its first target: a 13-second clip tweeted by Dan Scavino, White House director of social media, featuring [out of context words from Joe Biden]. The Biden campaign quickly denounced the video as “disinformation” and pressured both Twitter and Facebook to take it down. Twitter slapped the manipulated-media label on it. Facebook put a “partly false” screen over it. The debate that followed helped earn the clip millions of views.
Twitter recently rolled out a new policy aimed at “manipulated media.” Its first target: a 13-second clip tweeted by Dan Scavino, White House director of social media, featuring Joe Biden. The Biden campaign quickly denounced the video as “disinformation” and pressured both Twitter and Facebook to take it down. Twitter slapped the manipulated-media label on it. Facebook put a “partly false” screen over it. The debate that followed helped earn the clip millions of views. Imagine going after President Lyndon B.
If we have to suspend or otherwise modify political campaigning because of coronavirus, social media will become even more important and the fissures it creates even more painful. We should expect the platform companies such as Facebook and Google to step up to this national emergency—but can we?
Former New York City mayor Michael Bloomberg broke no law when he paid campaign workers $2,500 a month to promote his candidacy from their personal social media accounts without requiring them to disclose this sponsorship. After Twitter suspended 70 of these accounts for “platform manipulation,” his campaign voluntarily asked its workers to identify themselves on their social media accounts.
The internet was supposed to be the great gift to democracy because everyone would be free to express themselves without the interference of editors or other filters. Instead, the business model of the internet—collecting and manipulating personal information to sell targeting services—has created the tool for attacking the democratic imperative to seek Unum. Our foreign adversaries have proven especially talented in exploiting this capability.
Advances in technology are transforming how people across the globe engage with democracy. Opportunities for engagement and participation are expanding, but recent events highlight new threats to the integrity of democratic elections in a networked era.
As we enter the 2020 primary season, join journalists, political scientists, technologists, voting rights advocates, election law scholars, and regulators to explore these pressing issues.
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Campaign reform groups are telling the Federal Communications Commission to reject broadcasters' petition to 'clarify' the FCC's disclosure requirements for third-party political ads and follow the National Association of Broadcasters' "rationally tailored approach." NAB and others asked the FCC to narrow its definition of non-candidate ads on “any political matter of national importance" (i.e.