Tuesday, August 28, 2018

Vox Popoli: Smells like tech collusion

Representatives from a host of the biggest US tech companies, including Facebook and Twitter, have scheduled a private meeting for Friday to share their tactics in preparation for the 2018 midterm elections.

Last week, Facebook’s head of cybersecurity policy, Nathaniel Gleicher, invited employees from a dozen companies, including Google, Microsoft, and Snapchat, to gather at Twitter’s headquarters in downtown San Francisco, according to an email obtained by BuzzFeed News.

“As I’ve mentioned to several of you over the last few weeks, we have been looking to schedule a follow-on discussion to our industry conversation about information operations, election protection, and the work we are all doing to tackle these challenges,” Gleicher wrote.

The meeting, the Facebook official wrote, will have a three-part agenda: each company will present the work they’ve been doing to counter information operations; there will be a discussion period for problems each company faces; and a talk about whether such a meeting should become a regular occurrence.

My father was investigated by the Federal Election Commission for YEARS after he published a single state election guide that was entirely impartial and was praised widely by both the DFL and IR candidates for its detail, quality, and objectivity. The ABC affiliate TV news repeatedly tried ambushes at both his home and office, until eventually, the FEC simply dropped the whole thing without a word of explanation or apology.

And today the social media giants are permitted to publicly coordinating their tactics to influence the Federal elections?