(Bloomberg) U.S. senators used a Congressional hearing on Tuesday to push the idea of overhauling a law that protects YouTube, Facebook and other internet services from being sued for the content users post.
The Senate Judiciary subcommittee hearing, led by Senator Ted Cruz of Texas, featured accusations Republicans have been making for months: that Google manipulates search results and it YouTube video service to censor conservatives. Google policy chief Karan Bhatia denied this and said it would be bad for business if users didn’t trust the company to be impartial.
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What was new is that Cruz, fellow Republican Senator Josh Hawley and Democrat Richard Blumenthal attacked part of a 1996 law that helped internet companies thrive. Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act exempts online services from liability for user-generated content. There have been rising calls to re-examine this after Facebook, Twitter and YouTube failed to control harassment and other toxic content and behavior on their services.