Subpoenas have been sent to Twitter, Reddit, and the parent firms of Facebook and Google by the House select committee looking into the tragic Capitol brawl.
on Thursday, the panel’s head stated.
The bipartisan committee claimed it received “inadequate responses” from some of the top platforms after requesting a plethora of material from those and other social networks last summer.
US Capitol Assault Probe Subpoenas Social Media Sites
Once again, the Committee has requested extensive data pertaining to domestic terrorism, the dissemination of disinformation, and attempts to influence or overturn the 2020 election from Google’s parent firm Alphabet, Twitter, Reddit, and Meta (previously Facebook).
Chairman Bennie Thompson, D-Miss., said in a statement released Thursday that the Select Committee would be looking into “two key questions”:
“how the spread of misinformation and violent extremism contributed to the violent attack on our democracy,” and “what steps — if any — social media companies took to prevent their platforms from being breeding grounds for radicalising people to violence.”
Thompson expressed his displeasure that the team still lacked the knowledge and paperwork needed to address even the most fundamental issues after so many months of collaboration.
To help ensure that nothing like January 6th ever happens again, the Select Committee is seeking to get answers for the American people. Our crucial work simply cannot be put off any longer.
According to a statement released by a Reddit representative, the company has received the subpoena and “will continue to engage with the committee on their requirements.” A representative from Twitter said they couldn’t respond.
YouTube and Google
According to a Google representative, the company has been “actively collaborating” with the Select Committee since the beginning of their investigation, providing “substantive responses” to the committee’s demands for materials.
We have rigorous policies across YouTube and Google’s products that prohibit content that incites violence or undermines trust in elections, and we implemented these policies leading up to January 6 and we continue to police them now. We won’t rest until we’ve stopped all harassment on our platforms.
According to a statement released by Meta, “Facebook is working with [the committee] to give the critical information we sought,” echoing recent comments by Chairman Thompson.
Meta has since since, and will continue to, supply papers for the committee according to a timeline required by committee staff.
The disturbance on January 6 at the Capitol, in which hundreds of supporters of former President Donald Trump attacked the building forcefully, delayed the transition of power to current President Joe Biden, and will be investigated by the committee.
Thompson wrote to all four companies, saying the committee believes they have withheld information crucial to the House investigation.
After the brawl in the Capitol, Thompson contacted Alphabet CEO Sundar Pichai and informed him that the business had failed to produce records detailing its talks about content moderation and the procedures that led to Trump’s suspension from Google-owned YouTube.
Thompson added that Meta has not turned over any papers concerning the rumoured dissolution of the Facebook team dedicated to election risks prior to the invasion. The idea that Meta terminated the Civic Integrity team has previously been contested by the company.
As of October, according to a tweet from the VP of Integrity Guy Rosen, the group has been “absorbed” into a larger integrity team, and their efforts “continue to this day.”
According to the head of the committee, Reddit did not do a “thorough assessment of its records” in response to their inquiries. In addition, he claimed that Twitter has not provided sufficient documentation to explain the rationale behind Trump’s account suspension.