US President Donald Trump is considering a commission to investigate social media for supposed bias against conservative views, The Wall Street Journal reported Saturday. Trump has long railed against the alleged bias, but a commission could give the view some government clout.
Trump frequently promotes his views on Twitter but also has long complained of what he sees as an anticonservative bias online. On May 16 Trump complained, without evidence, that “The Radical Left is in total command & control of Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Google. The Administration is working to remedy this illegal situation.”
Websites have struggled to police the activity of millions of users in a way that fosters debate but protects against abuses by bots, trolls, state actors manipulating elections and other problems.
For example, a Carnegie Mellon study this week found that bots posted 34% of tweets about “reopening America” during the coronavirus pandemic. Twitter permits tweets from Trump and other high-level political figures that otherwise would violate the company’s anti-abuse policies.
Twitter said in a statement that it strives to be impartial and transparent about its rules. “We enforce the Twitter Rules impartially for all users, regardless of their background or political affiliation,” the company said Saturday.
The White House, Facebook and Google didn’t immediately respond to requests for comment.