Facebook and Twitter executives Mark Zuckerberg and Jack Dorsey faced Senate questioning on Tuesday regarding political censorship, including interaction with Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Tex., who later warned FOX Business' "The Evening Edit" of the threat big tech poses to American freedom.
“Today was a rough day for big tech,” he said. “Between Facebook, Twitter and then Google, which is really the 800-pound gorilla, we have enormous concentration of power. And I think they collectively pose the single greatest threat we have to free speech in this country.”
Cruz explained that big tech companies have become increasingly more “brazen” in their censoring of content they disagree with. This especially applies to Twitter, he said, since a few weeks ago the platform used its power to ban the New York Post for 12 days.
“The newspaper with the fourth-leading circulation in the United States and big tech asserted the power to just silence them because they didn’t like what they were reporting,” he said. “I think it’s really dangerous.”
“I’m glad we had this hearing today,” he went on. “I’m going to continue leading the charge to bring accountability and protect free speech and stop the abuse of power from big tech.”
Cruz proposed potential solutions for putting an end to big tech censorship, including enforcing antitrust laws and repealing Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act – a special immunity from liability granted by Congress more than 20 years ago.
At the time, Cruz explained, Congress believed big tech platforms would serve as neutral public forums and as a “fair marketplace of ideas.” But today, this same notion doesn’t hold true.
“Now they’re openly censoring,” he said. “They shouldn’t get a special immunity from liability."