Sen. Marco Rubio, R-Fla., is sounding the alarm on Big Tech censors that wield "authoritarian powers" to decide what people see, post, and share on social media.
In commentary posted by Fox News, Rubio argued for passage of legislation dubbed the DISCOURSE Act, which aims to limit the immunity granted to tech firms by Section 230 of the Communications and Decency Act.
"Today, a group of unelected, anonymous, and unaccountable people now have the power to determine what can and can't be said in day-to-day online conversation," he wrote.
"Every single day we allow this status quo to remain in place, our new public square becomes more censorious and disconnected from reality."
Rubio called out Apple, Microsoft, Google, Facebook, and Twitter for holding "the power to wipe you off the face of the Earth."
"They have repeatedly demonstrated their willingness to ban and censor users espousing beliefs they consider conservative, or ones that otherwise dissent from the far-left echo chambers now ubiquitous online," he argued.
He added the power puts America "at a dangerous impasse."
"Big Tech has usurped what are essentially authoritarian powers — the power to decide what you're allowed to see, what you're allowed to post, and with whom you're allowed to share," he wrote.
According to Rubio, "aside from censoring Americans," the tech giants "also regularly engages in content manipulation" — citing Twitter's suspending the New York Post's account after it published a story on Hunter Biden's hard drive that allegedly implicated Joe Biden in his son's foreign deals.
He asserted the companies get a pass by from Section 230.
"Since the bill's passage 25 years ago, the once scrappy internet companies that benefited from Section 230's protections have transformed into monopolistic titans," he wrote.
"Their mission changed, too. Today's tech giants use opaque algorithms, unaccountable moderating teams, and so called ‘fact checkers' to manipulate America's discourse to their worldview," he wrote, adding Section 230 "gives these companies immunity from nearly all liability — a privilege no other industry enjoys."
Rubio's bill updates the statute so when a market-dominant firm actively promotes or censors certain material or viewpoints — including through the manipulative use of algorithms — it no longer receives protections. The bill also limits Section 230 immunities for large corporations that fail to live up to the statute's obligations.
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