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house Bill H.R. 7117

Should the FTC Start a Task Force on Social Media Bots?

Argument in favor

Bots pose a clear threat to electoral security, public trust in institutions, and accurate reporting of the news. Their impact on the 2016 presidential election has been widely acknowledged and warrants further congressional action to prevent future elections from being impacted by foreign social media actors.

burrkitty's Opinion
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11/17/2018
Also bring back the Fairness Doctrine for media. Things started going downhill when we lost the legal guidelines that made the media tell the TRUTH!
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SneakyPete's Opinion
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11/17/2018
H.R. 7117 AKA the Bots Research Act I’m in FULL support and recommend the passage of the HOUSE bill H.R.7117 AKA The Bots Research Act —Which would establish a new task force at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to determine automated social media accounts’ (often known as “bots”) impact on public discourse and elections. This task force would include at least one member from each of the following sectors: government, academia, non-profits, and industry. It would be charged with defining what qualifies as a “bot,” identifying how such accounts are used, and recommending strategies for combating bots’ negative effects. Bots pose a clear threat to electoral security, public trust in institutions, and accurate reporting of the news. Their impact on the 2016 presidential election has been widely acknowledged and warrants further congressional action to prevent future elections from being impacted by foreign social media actors. SneakyPete.... 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻. 11*17*18.....
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Juan's Opinion
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11/17/2018
Yes I like this bill. I didn’t read the whole back drop to this bill but on the surface it seems necessary. I would hope that this bill had a expiration date though, let it run for 1-2 to see how effective it is. While we’re on the topic of internet regulations, The government should also consider a similar bill that Europe passed, General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). “At its heart, GDPR provides European citizens with the tools they need to better control the data collected about them. Under the law, from May 25 onwards, firms anywhere in the world that collect data on E.U. citizens need to offer users the option to see the information collected about them, and to move or delete that information. Firms will also be required to report any data breaches within 72 hours”.
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Argument opposed

The threat of bots is exaggerated and the major social media platforms are already under pressure to rein them in. Convening a task force won’t significantly advance anti-bot efforts since it’s the social media platforms themselves, not Congress, that will develop the most effective anti-bot policies and technologies.

Bob's Opinion
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11/18/2018
The government has no place in this matter. Bots should be handled by the websites, programs, or service providers, and those who create bots should be held liable for violating terms of service in civil lawsuits.
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Brian 's Opinion
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11/18/2018
Waste money on something else that Doesn’t matter. How about making these public platforms actually able to let people speak and ask questions instead of banning them for not blindly following there ideology.
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Kathryn 's Opinion
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11/18/2018
I’m only voting Nay because, as is, the bill is very vague. It’s a great idea! but I think it needs tweaking... first and foremost you have to define what is or what qualifies as hate speech and what is, or isn’t protected by the first amendment. Secondly, perhaps this would be best done by a third party collaboration that doesn’t in involve government? You have a lot of distrust out there (rightfully so, the government doesn’t have the best history in terms of honesty and transparency) and I’m afraid people/media would just continually try to annihilate the validity of any results due to the governments involvement. Thirdly, you say the social media giants are already under a lot of pressure to combat this...what’s going on with that? is there no progress? What have their results looked like? Why do we need this bill if they are already working on it?
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    Also bring back the Fairness Doctrine for media. Things started going downhill when we lost the legal guidelines that made the media tell the TRUTH!
    Like (153)
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    The government has no place in this matter. Bots should be handled by the websites, programs, or service providers, and those who create bots should be held liable for violating terms of service in civil lawsuits.
    Like (22)
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    H.R. 7117 AKA the Bots Research Act I’m in FULL support and recommend the passage of the HOUSE bill H.R.7117 AKA The Bots Research Act —Which would establish a new task force at the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) to determine automated social media accounts’ (often known as “bots”) impact on public discourse and elections. This task force would include at least one member from each of the following sectors: government, academia, non-profits, and industry. It would be charged with defining what qualifies as a “bot,” identifying how such accounts are used, and recommending strategies for combating bots’ negative effects. Bots pose a clear threat to electoral security, public trust in institutions, and accurate reporting of the news. Their impact on the 2016 presidential election has been widely acknowledged and warrants further congressional action to prevent future elections from being impacted by foreign social media actors. SneakyPete.... 👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻👍🏻. 11*17*18.....
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    Yes I like this bill. I didn’t read the whole back drop to this bill but on the surface it seems necessary. I would hope that this bill had a expiration date though, let it run for 1-2 to see how effective it is. While we’re on the topic of internet regulations, The government should also consider a similar bill that Europe passed, General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR). “At its heart, GDPR provides European citizens with the tools they need to better control the data collected about them. Under the law, from May 25 onwards, firms anywhere in the world that collect data on E.U. citizens need to offer users the option to see the information collected about them, and to move or delete that information. Firms will also be required to report any data breaches within 72 hours”.
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    Waste money on something else that Doesn’t matter. How about making these public platforms actually able to let people speak and ask questions instead of banning them for not blindly following there ideology.
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    With our whole world going online, there’s a lot at stake. It’s time our laws caught up with the changing times. Bots are just the tip of the iceberg.
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    These apps are leveraged by our enemies, foreign and domestic, to spread fear, misinformation, and therefore further dividing our Republic.
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    Yes because the truth needs to come out and get rid of the paranoia and conspiracy theories about conservatives being banned.
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    I’m only voting Nay because, as is, the bill is very vague. It’s a great idea! but I think it needs tweaking... first and foremost you have to define what is or what qualifies as hate speech and what is, or isn’t protected by the first amendment. Secondly, perhaps this would be best done by a third party collaboration that doesn’t in involve government? You have a lot of distrust out there (rightfully so, the government doesn’t have the best history in terms of honesty and transparency) and I’m afraid people/media would just continually try to annihilate the validity of any results due to the governments involvement. Thirdly, you say the social media giants are already under a lot of pressure to combat this...what’s going on with that? is there no progress? What have their results looked like? Why do we need this bill if they are already working on it?
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    While you’re at it, start a committee to address climate change in order to better prepare for future climate and weather catastrophes.
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    Bots swayed the elections? No don’t think so. When I was told by the anarchists (democrats) that boys should be girls & girls should be boys, that was enough to sway my vote.
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    Social media bots should be illegal!!!!!
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    About time that Congress woke up to the cyber threat.
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    i do think the constant barrage of misinformation and provocation from non-human posters on social media is a problem for our society. People are becoming more and more susceptible to violence based on conspiracy theories, such as what happened with the Pittsburgh synagogue shooting. Allowing fake posts to stoke such theories will only add to the possibility of more violence in the future. I think all media companies should employ better tools for screening and removing bots and other fake posts, and the FTC can lead this effort.
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    The FTC, as all federal agencies, are limited by the US Constitution, so have no authority outside of that document.
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    Yes!
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    This is essential to democracy functioning correctly.
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    Define "bots", "fake news", and "disinformation". Even better, define exactly WHO decides what the definitions are and how they are applied. Then we can tslk about what a FANTASTIC censorship toolkit you have built and who gets to control it.
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    I will err on the side of caution on this one. I suppose some people need to be spoon-fed since they are not inclined to research and know facts. Personally, I’m not going to fall for stuff on social media because I read and do research on candidates and other pertinent information prior to voting. From where I see it, it certainly isn’t the Russians or the Chinese we should worry about—it’s the Democrats who are meddling and trying to steal the elections.
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    While a study will provide more precise information what is really needed is actual follow up to the findings of such a commission. Realistic time frames for reports with concrete steps that can be taken in a timely way would make this commission worth it’s effort.
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