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WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The U.S. House Judiciary Committee will hold a hearing on Tuesday to take testimony from Facebook Inc, Alphabet Inc’s YouTube unit and Twitter Inc on whether social media companies are filtering content for political reasons, the committee chairman said. Conservative Republicans in Congress have criticized social media companies for what they claim are politically motivated practices in removing some content, a charge the companies have rejected. House Judiciary Committee chairman Bob Goodlatte said in a statement on Friday that he was pleased the companies will send experts “to answer questions on their content moderation practices and how they can be better stewards of free speech in the United States and abroad.”.
Twitter declined to comment, Facebook on Friday confirmed they would participate but declined further comment, Alphabet did not immediately comment, Facebook’s head of global policy management Monika Bickert, Youtube global head of public policy and government relations Juniper Downs and Twitter’s senior strategist Nick Pickles will testify, the committee said, The committee held a hearing in April on the same topic letter g cufflinks after representatives of the companies skipped it, Republicans repeatedly suggested at the hearing that the companies are censoring or blocking content from conservatives, a charge the companies rejected..
Lawmakers from both parties agreed tech companies must remove illegal content like fraud, piracy and sex trafficking but differed on whether they should remove objectionable content. Goodlatte said “while these companies may have legal, economic, and ideological reasons to manage their content like a traditional media outlet, we must nevertheless weigh as a nation whether the standards they apply endanger our free and open society and its culture of freedom of expression.”. Representative Jerrold Nadler, top Democrat on the committee, said in April “the notion that social media companies are filtering out conservative voices is a hoax, a tired narrative of imagined victimhood.”.
Nadler added “conservative commentary, including conspiracy theories letter g cufflinks of a conservative bent, regularly rank among the most far-reaching posts on Facebook and elsewhere.”, Berin Szoka, president of TechFreedom, said at the hearing that “concerns about Facebook’s potential slant are best addressed through other measures, starting with transparency and user empowerment, Ultimately, the best check on Facebook’s power today is the threat of a new Facebook disrupting the company’s dominance.”..
(Reuters) - The U.S. Department of Commerce on Friday lifted a ban on U.S. companies selling goods to ZTE Corp, allowing China’s second-largest telecommunications equipment maker to resume business. The Commerce Department removed the ban shortly after ZTE deposited $400 million in a U.S. bank escrow account as part of a settlement reached last month. The settlement also included a $1 billion penalty that ZTE paid to the U.S. Treasury in June. “The department will remain vigilant as we closely monitor ZTE’s actions to ensure compliance with all U.S. laws and regulations,” Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross said in a statement that described the terms of the deal as the strictest ever imposed in such a case.
The terms will allow the department to protect U.S, national security, Ross said, The administration has clashed with lawmakers from its own party over issues related to China, and this was no different, On Friday, Senator Marco Rubio, a Republican, criticized the lifting of the ban, “ZTE letter g cufflinks should be put out of business, There is no ‘deal’ with a state-directed company that the Chinese government and Communist Party uses to spy and steal from us where Americans come out winning,” Rubio said in a statement..
A photograph circulating among employees around midnight showed ZTE’s new chief executive and 10 other managers each giving a thumbs-up to the news, which was flashed on a screen at the company, according to a person familiar with the matter. The reprieve follows threats by the Trump administration this week to impose 10 percent tariffs on $200 billion of Chinese goods in a trade war. ZTE did not respond to requests for comment. ZTE, which relies on U.S. components for its smart phones and networking gear, ceased major operations after the ban was ordered in April.
U.S, President Donald Trump tweeted in May that letter g cufflinks he closed down ZTE and let it reopen, although no agreement had been reached, White House trade adviser Peter Navarro said last month Trump agreed to lift the ban as a goodwill gesture to Chinese President Xi Jinping, The company had made false statements about disciplining 35 employees involved with illegally shipping U.S.-origin goods to Iran and North Korea, Commerce Department officials said, ZTE pleaded guilty last year over the sanctions violations..