The House committee investigating the Capitol riot has subpoenaed several Big Tech companies.
Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, and YouTube were all subpoenaed on Thursday. The committee argues that they have not been forthcoming after a previous request for information.
According to The Hill, Committee Chair Bennie Thompson (D-MS) released a statement, saying, “Two key questions for the Select Committee are how the spread of misinformation and violent extremism contributed to the violent attack on democracy, and what steps – if any – social media companies took to prevent their platforms from being breeding grounds for radicalizing people to violence.”
Thompson continued, “It’s disappointing that after months of engagement, we still do not have the documents and information necessary to answer those basic questions.”
The panel requisitioned internal and external reviews of the 2020 election misinformation or violent extremism from the tech giants back in August as one of its first formal actions. In addition, all relevant internal communications and everything given to law enforcement was also requested.
The goal is to understand how social media was used to coordinate the attack, and how much the companies knew about radicalization related to the incident, and spread of misinformation. So far, the committee has reached a standstill with the tech companies.
“After over four months of good-faith negotiations on the part of the Select Committee, it has become clear that Twitter is unwilling to commit to voluntarily and expeditiously complying with the Select Committee’s requests,” the committee wrote in the subpoena to Twitter. Both Facebook and YouTube are pushing back against claims of being uncooperative.
ARTICLE: JILLIAN WEIDNER
MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE
PHOTO CREDITS: NPR