Should the U.S. Government Increase Regulations on Social Media Companies?

In recent days, a whistleblower from the Facebook organization has claimed that the company’s products, “harm children, stoke division and weaken our democracy.” This is not the first time that a social media company has come under scrutiny, as Americans have previously debated how giants like Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram should handle misinformation and hate speech. Congress is again considering increasing regulations on social media, leading to more debates on the topic. 

Those who support the government increasing regulations on social media companies argue that lawmakers need to do so for the good of all Americans. They argue that unregulated social media has allowed misinformation to spread and bred increased national divisions by allowing debates on their platforms. Additionally, they may argue that these unregulated companies can pick and choose what viewpoints to allow to be broadcast on their platforms, which harms the free exchange of ideas. 

Those who oppose the government increasing regulations on social media companies argue that increasing government regulations on social media would cause more harm than good. They contend that the companies themselves should be the ones to implement any increased regulations, as they know their platforms better than lawmakers. Additionally, they may argue that individuals have a responsibility to monitor their own behaviors and that it is not the government’s responsibility to promote civil discourse and virtue. Finally, they may claim that increased regulations will be detrimental to a company’s freedom to determine its own policies. 

 So, what do you think? Should the U.S. Government Increase Regulations on Social Media Companies? Students may answer Yes, it should; No, it should not, or a nuanced answer in-between! 

 Note: Ideal Think the Vote responses include the following:  

-Address the question asked in a thoughtful and meaningful manner  

-Use cited facts and constitutional arguments when appropriate to support their answers  

-Are expressed in cohesive sentences and are free of distracting spelling, punctuation, and grammatical errors  

-They address counter-arguments and opposing concerns in a respectful manner  

-They organize their answer in a manner that flows logically and reads clearly  

Current Standings:
Yes: 46%
No: 54%
  • Tyler from South Dakota

    I do believe that social media platforms need to be censored/regulated. There is lots of false advertising and fake news that floats around the internet, and many people could believe it without looking into it. Another way censoring could help is with hate speech towards people, which is already being taken care of partially, but this would really push for it. Some people may say that they could remove things based on potential bias, but that’s where the company who makes the platform could come in and help as well, and just remove things based on their guidelines. As long as there are regulations to what they are censoring, I think it is a good idea, so then we can get misleading information off of social media and out of people’s minds.

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    I do believe that social media platforms need to be censored/regulated. There is lots of false advertising and fake news that floats around the intern…

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  • Jolee from Missouri

    I think i could go both ways. I think yes in some ways they should be more strict and about certain subjects. But at the same time I think that a lot of social media sources are improving still today and a lot of them have gotten better about what is acceptable to have online and what isant. Also social media usually is the reason of rumors spreading, and or bullying it has a lot of cons but also has its pros.

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    I think i could go both ways. I think yes in some ways they should be more strict and about certain subjects. But at the same time I think that a lot …

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  • Mycha from Missouri

    Should social media companies be more strict about their influencing website with rules? I think i could go both ways. I think yes in some ways they should be more strict and about certain subjects. But at the same time I think that a lot of social media sources are improving still today and a lot of them have gotten better about what is acceptable to have online and what isant. Also social media usually is the reason of rumors spreading, and or bullying it has a lot of cons but also has its pros.

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    Should social media companies be more strict about their influencing website with rules? I think i could go both ways. I think yes in some ways they s…

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  • Kaitlyn-Faith from South Dakota

    I believe that they should regulate social media to a point. It is known that cyberbullying can have devastating consequences. when you take away the hate and bullying it makes social media safer, but if you regulate social media too much it takes away almost all creativity. They should regulate hate, violence, hate crimes, racism, sexism, and homophobia. Everyone has some form of social media and those places should be a safe environment for creativity. so in general I believe that social media should be regulated to make it a safe place to be creative and be yourself.

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    I believe that they should regulate social media to a point. It is known that cyberbullying can have devastating consequences. when you take away the …

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  • Sylas from South Dakota

    I think there should be more regulations on social media platforms. Granted when there are more regulations there is the less free exchange of ideas, but sometimes not all ideas need to be shared and when there are regulations it can control what is said. Another reason I believe there should be more regulations is that it’s easier for people to be rude and disrespectful when they are behind a screen, and not in person, cyberbullying. I agree that it will do all Americans good if there were more regulations.

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    I think there should be more regulations on social media platforms. Granted when there are more regulations there is the less free exchange of ideas,…

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  • Grace from Tennessee

    Something that my middle school history teacher, Mr. Smith, always told us in class was this: “Your rights end where someone else’s’ begin.” There is an ultimate balance of freedom to ensure that my freedom does not infringe on other people’s rights. The hardest question to answer is this: “What is the fairest judgment we can achieve?” Our government was created to protect our rights, not limit them. The Bill of Rights perfectly states this:

    “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievance.”

    Abridging means shortening, limiting, diminishing, or even omitting words without the change of the meaning, according to the Merriam Webster dictionary (“Definition of Abridge”).
    Thus, there can be no law made that shortens the freedom of speech. In actuality, these freedoms are protected. Everyone must be able to express their freedom of speech. Thus, people on social media do not need to be regulated, unless they are breaking another law. However, misinformation is not illegal, it’s simply unwise. The issue with the government is that they seem to believe the American people are unable to determine what is truth and what is not. Although this may be true for only some people, the government is not obligated to take control of our thought processes. Otherwise, we are no longer a democratic-republic. When we are only allowed certain information, then we have only one set of information to form a view on. This is what happens in communist countries. As a result, the United States allows for a variety of opinions and sources. There are also laws that prohibit certain speech behaviors like defamation of character. According to Congressional Research Service Reports in 2019:

    “. . . the Court has recognized certain, relatively limited categories of speech that can be more readily regulated: ‘For example, speech that is obscene or defamatory can be constitutionally proscribed because the social interest in order and morality outweighs the negligible contribution of those categories of speech to the marketplace of ideas.’ But even with respect to these categories of speech, the government may violate the First Amendment if it engages in further content or viewpoint discrimination within that category.”

    This means that the government cannot reasonably push the boundaries of free speech when it comes to the free exchange of ideas. However, since some of these platforms are owned and operated by a private business, they utilize their ability to regulate speech. According to the same source:

    “While the Supreme Court has not yet weighed in on the question, lower courts have held that when search engines make decisions regarding the presentation of search results, they are exercising editorial functions protected as speech under the First Amendment. If this reasoning were to be extended to social media sites’ decisions regarding the presentation of users’ content, Congress’s ability to regulate those decisions would be relatively limited.”

    Social media companies are not regulated enough by the government to protect the freedom of speech. These companies need to be regulated by the government to ensure that they are not abridging the freedom of speech. These company policies should be examined by officials. Individuals can say what they want on social media, with respect to the above mentioned exceptions. These social media companies’ intention is to gather data, information, etc. from their users, not to promote a specific ideology. As a result, these regulations would only ensure that they were not imposing only one set of ideologies.

    Works Cited:
    “Definition of Abridge.” http://Www.merriam-Webster.com, http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/abridge. Accessed 18 Oct. 2021.
    Free Speech and the Regulation of Social Media Content. 2019. https://crsreports.congress.gov/product/pdf/R/R45650
    Davenport v. Wash. Educ. Ass’n, 515 U.S. 177, 188 (2007). See generally CRS In Focus IF11072, The First Amendment: Categories of Speech, by Victoria L. Killion (describing regulable categories of speech)

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    Something that my middle school history teacher, Mr. Smith, always told us in class was this: “Your rights end where someone else’s’ begin.” T…

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  • leigha from Missouri

    I vote yes, because the key source of misinformation is through social media posts. People will go onto Facebook or Twitter and post harmful and incorrect information. Peoples opinions on what they think are facts… are not really facts when it comes to social media.

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    I vote yes, because the key source of misinformation is through social media posts. People will go onto Facebook or Twitter and post harmful and incor…

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  • Kemani from Missouri

    I believe they should put restrictions on social media is because it’s a way for kids to be safe. Either that being on tik tok, instagram or snapchat it’s a way to keep them save from danger on the sites they get on. Some of the social media information is falsified and can become a way to get people to hack your phones. Kids needs to be safe about the sites they get on and about the stuff that they see and read some of that information is inappropriate for there age and they don’t need to learn about it yet.

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    I believe they should put restrictions on social media is because it’s a way for kids to be safe. Either that being on tik tok, instagram or snapchat …

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  • Maggie from Missouri

    The government should put more regulations on social media because misinformation gets spread around quickly. People look to social media for a lot news and lots of people put the wrong information to cause more drama. I think the government needs to regulate it because it’s easy for people to get confused with a bunch of wrong information floating around.

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    The government should put more regulations on social media because misinformation gets spread around quickly. People look to social media for a lot ne…

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  • Isabel from South Dakota

    Our society relies greatly on social media for information, I believe it should be regulated. The audience should be aware of a post is aimed towards a specific person rather than being unbiased. Social media is used to quickly spread information around the world. False posts can have a long-term impact on people’s lives. It needs to be regulated.

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    Our society relies greatly on social media for information, I believe it should be regulated. The audience should be aware of a post is aimed towards …

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  • Trina from South Dakota

    Yes, because if the government doesn’t control what is being posted on social media platforms, it will lead to an outbreak between people in the nation of which side is right and which side is wrong, and which side is right. The government is watching how people act on social media but they aren’t doing anything about the bad behavior that is being exhibited on social media platforms. There are places on the internet where individuals can report information that is wrong on these social media platforms but no one knows about it so they can’t do anything about it. But it isn’t just the people in the U.S. that are causing these outbreaks, it is also people from other countries that just want to cause drama here in the United States just to see how long it takes before the country falls. If this doesn’t get sorted out eventually the U.S. is going to go into chaos maybe even lead to another war within the united states. China is keeping a close eye on the United States, how long until all countries are keeping a close eye on us as a country.

    One platform such as Facebook has issues with showing child abuse and self-harm. Facebook was also working with Libra to help them with financial issues but instead, it gave people issues with their privacy policy and political advertising. Yes, Facebook may be a large social media platform but there are going through an antitrust probe by the European Commission because of how many issues there have been with Facebook. But because of the antitrust probe being done to facebook by Europe, the country fears that it will be under a lot more pressure, get a lot of hate speech for what they are doing and that Europe as a country might get a new antitrust probe.

    Instagram, WhatsApp, and Facebook went down for about 6 hours on Monday, October 5th, 2021. Why? Because of a whistler, she had stepped forward and explained to the Senate what was actually going on with all of these apps that Facebook owns. But according to Facebook itself, there was a technical issue going on which had lead to the system going down. That technical issue was a software bug, but if it was a software bug which kind, was it a coding bug or a data bug? Because of all of this going on Mark Zuckerberg the creator of Facebook has lost 7 billion dollars making him the 5th richest man now.

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    Yes, because if the government doesn’t control what is being posted on social media platforms, it will lead to an outbreak between people in the natio…

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  • mackenna from Missouri

    yes and no. I think there does need to be increased because there is some post that get post that shouldn’t get posted ever on a public site but does. Then there is also post that get taken down that are a controversial that some people should be able to post and not just one sided.

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    yes and no. I think there does need to be increased because there is some post that get post that shouldn’t get posted ever on a public site but does….

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  • Katelyn from South Dakota

    The U.S. Government should increase regulations on social media companies because certain parts need to be policed as social media has shown little to no change when it comes to hate speech, misinformation, and toxic beauty standards. Social media has now become an essential part of our modern culture and has a significant impact on our daily lives.
    In all countries, social media is very risky and can lead to poor mental health, sex trafficking, misleading information, and a variety of other issues. Some content creators on those sites post misleading propaganda to further the divide within our country, between races, etc. Those posts have been able to stay up even though they are creating harm to communities and spreading false information. There have been other instances of graphic and inappropriate content being posted and spread on social media to unsuspecting users which could lead to traumatic memories and poor mental health. If the government implemented regulations, hopefully it would block certain posts from being made to stop harmful content. There are multiple things epically on Tik Tok and Instagram that they sensor the content but you can still see it. For example during covid, all of the apps/ social media’s had girls killed and it was recorded and got put on the app where millions of kids and adults saw what happened and it took forever for them to take them down because it wasn’t taken down right away, so then it was shared and scattered across the medias.
    As I said earlier this will have a big impact on the first amendment and there will be people and a bunch of hate over this towards the government. According to CATO Institute “Regulations of social media companies might either indirectly restrict individual speech or directly limit a right to curate an internet platform. The First Amendment offers strong protections against such restrictions.” Freedom of speech is very important and there are multiple regulations from social media companies that are already implemented that the government doesn’t need to do. For freedom of speech there are a lot of regulations that people don’t think about that are not covered by this amendment. The freedom of speech will help you with what you believe in but it will not protect you from Obscenity, being offensive with words, photos or behavior. The first amendment wont help protect you from saying slander or cruel things to a person that will hurt them or others. The first amendment can only do so much to which it stops working to help protect people.
    But there are multiple companies that hide things from the outside world. Like for example the facebook whistleblower, According to npr “Almost no one outside of Facebook knows what happens inside Facebook,”. A girl named Frances Haugen said that after she was done working for facebook to congress. She stated, “The company intentionally hides vital information from the public, from the U.S. government, and from governments around the world.” And that proves that even big social media companies are not reliable and that they need the government to help them regulate laws to make social media more safe for all ages.

    Citations:
    Allyn, B. (2021, October 6). Here are 4 key points from the Facebook whistleblower’s testimony on Capitol Hill. NPR. Retrieved October 18, 2021, from https://www.npr.org/2021/10/05/1043377310/facebook-whistleblower-frances-haugen-congress.
    Cato.org. (n.d.). Retrieved October 18, 2021, from https://www.cato.org/policy-analysis/why-government-should-not-regulate-content-moderation-social-media.
    Cummings, B. (2018, April 2). The Pros and cons of regulating social media influencing. Entrepreneur. Retrieved October 18, 2021, from https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/311352.

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    The U.S. Government should increase regulations on social media companies because certain parts need to be policed as social media has shown little to…

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  • Taylen from South Dakota

    The U.S. Government should increase regulations on social media companies. They create social media to show the world what you are doing but they need to be protecting you first. Right now that isn’t their priority. Their priority is to make money. The whistleblower even said how they( social media) are using their foot and pushing the bad things under the rug instead of owning up that they aren’t caring for the people first. I feel like if the government takes a step into social media it will put the people first and that is the biggest deal. People matter most over money.

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    The U.S. Government should increase regulations on social media companies. They create social media to show the world what you are doing but they need…

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  • moriah from Washington

    Government should step in and help regulate social media companies in order to promote safety of users and to prevent the spread of false information. Around 64% of Twitter users reported encountering news that they found out later to be untrue and around 16% of Twitter uses reported to actually tweeting or retweeting false information. This be dangerous not only to individuals who believe these lies but also to our country when this problem can come up during important things such as elections.

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    Government should step in and help regulate social media companies in order to promote safety of users and to prevent the spread of false information….

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  • Carter from Missouri

    Yes. I think they should because it can decrease the amount of wrong and misleading information be given to kids and young adults

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  • Ryan from Kentucky

    Yes, the U.S. Government should increase regulations on social media companies. While I am rarely in support of giving our federal government even more power, tech giants have completely wiped out free speech and bipartisanship under the loophole that private companies can restrict or promote anything they see fit in a business relatively new. Under the First Amendment, American citizens have the freedom to speak their mind and opinions, whether that be having a letter published in the newspaper, being interviewed on TV, or just standing on a street corner yelling at passerbyers. However, people have far less freedom to speak their mind on the internet because companies like Facebook and Twitter censor whatever they feel is hate speech or propaganda, without any definitive description of what those things entail. And to make the situation worse, real people are not the ones flagging and taking down “malicious” content, computers are. Codes are written to take down any post with certain keywords or information, without taking into account the context are in. To limit the power of social media companies and its’ attack on free speech, Congress should implement concrete definitions for “hate speech” and “propaganda” to create a frame for what should or shouldn’t be taken down online. Additionally, the government should incorporate social media under free speech, and not let private companies silence the voices of many who use these platforms to spread their message.

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    Yes, the U.S. Government should increase regulations on social media companies. While I am rarely in support of giving our federal government even mor…

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  • Artem from Illinois

    At this point, Facebook’s routine testimony in Congress is not surprising and barely reinvigorates debates about social media. Many have now become desensitized and accepted unethical practices of tech companies as an unalterable reality. However, the more times a company like Facebook appears before Congress, the more obvious it becomes that there is a need for systemic change, and that it must come soon. After so many scandals, light has been shed on numerous questionable practices that companies are not willing to change themselves, creating the need for the federal government to step in. All these practices stem from the fundamentally problematic profit structure of technology companies. Social media is designed and maintained by private for-profit corporations, and it is only natural and not inherently immoral for them to want to earn money. However, the way they do it prioritizes engagement over well-being of the users. Since their products are free, the companies’ main source of revenue is advertisements. Therefore, the longer a user stays on the platform, the more ads they will see, and the more the company will earn. In order to keep the users scrolling, their actions are monitored and users are shown what they want to see. This presents two challenges. The first one is a violation of privacy – in order to find out what a user may want to see and what kinds of ads they would be interested in, their clicks, searches, likes, and followings are recorded and stored to build their marketing profile (https://9to5mac.com/2021/03/30/research-shows-google-collects-20x-more-data-from-android-than-apple-collects-from-ios/). This presents not just a moral issue regarding corporations having so much power and information virtually without consent, but also a serious security threat when this data is leaked and used by bad actors, including hostile foreign governments, as has happened on numerous occasions (https://www.csoonline.com/article/2130877/the-biggest-data-breaches-of-the-21st-century.html). The second issue arises when the companies use the collected information to recommend content. Although the issue of polarizing media is not new, the hyper-individualized polarization of social media is unique. In the past, the limited nature of television and newspapers meant that mostly moderate ideas would be presented – a TV channel, for instance, is not likely to televise fringe content during prime time, since they would want to appeal to a wider audience to maximize profit. On social media, however, bandwidth is infinite: many streams from all kinds of different sources can be posted and viewed simultaneously, ensuring that each user’s feed will be tailored specifically to them. This keeps users in echo-chambers, and often exposes them to extremist rabbit holes they would otherwise never find themselves. Children are particularly vulnerable because they don’t know any better than to believe much of what they see online and because it is easier to get their developing brains addicted to the product. To battle these problems, the federal government must intervene and update regulations on social media. First and foremost, Congress must pass legislation to ensure transparency from technology companies. Currently, many of the algorithms and inner workings of Facebook, Google, and others are kept in a black box, and everyone else, including the government, only finds out about wrongdoings from occasional whistleblowers. Therefore, Congress must reform section 230 of the Communications Decency Act (the federal law that gives internet companies protection from liability for user-generated content disseminated on their platforms) and require social media companies to disclose what information is collected from users and how it is used in order to qualify for the section’s protections. To increase accountability, Congress may create an outside regulatory agency that would have the power to request the above data from tech companies. Once this information is known, it will become much easier to determine how to best regulate these platforms. One simple step to take would be to require tech companies to disclose who pays for advertisements, like other forms of media already do. Another one is to halt or at least limit auto-play and infinite scrolling features to give users more control over what content they see and minimize their exposure to more radical posts that they may never have sought out on their own. Congress should also tighten controls on data collection and marketing to children, and perhaps even mandate some form of age-verification software to hide dangerous, extremist, offensive, or pornographic content from minors. Most importantly, amplification of radical ideas and promotion of polarization must stop. To be clear, Congress should not regulate speech itself – that would be neither moral nor legal – though private companies may choose to remove certain content if they wish. Instead, the federal government should pass legislation to prevent these ideas from being shown and promoted to maximize engagement. Wall Street Journal’s Facebook papers showed that companies are fully aware how certain ideas on their platforms are harmful, but they not only do nothing to regulate this content, but in fact actively promote it as a means of keeping users on the platform (https://www.wsj.com/articles/the-facebook-files-11631713039). It is likely that federally banning personalization algorithms altogether may be the solution. We should hold the companies accountable not for the fact that someone posts misinformation or extreme rhetoric, but for how their recommendation engines spread it, how their algorithms steer people towards it, and how their privacy-violating tools are used to target people with it. The government needs to reconsider how the entire technology machine is designed and monetized. Until that happens, we will never truly address how platforms are aiding and abetting those intent on harming our democracy and well-being.

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    At this point, Facebook’s routine testimony in Congress is not surprising and barely reinvigorates debates about social media. Many have now become …

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  • Tyler from South Dakota

    I think that the government should have the power to increase regulations on social media. Social media can be very dangerous if not used correctly. It can lead to cyberbullying, invasion of privacy, and many more. But another big one is the spread of false information. In this day and age, so many people read just the headlines and don’t look at the source, or the explanations. This can be very dangerous and can cause separation between people. This is why the government should increase regulations on social media.

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    I think that the government should have the power to increase regulations on social media. Social media can be very dangerous if not used correctly. I…

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  • claire from Missouri

    its an easier way for misinformation to spread. the reason why they should put a restriction on social media like tik tok and other media platforms is that they can sometimes be inapproperiate for the people that are in the videos. nw a days kids are posting very explicite things.

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    its an easier way for misinformation to spread. the reason why they should put a restriction on social media like tik tok and other media platforms i…

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  • Lilly from South Dakota

    I think that the government should increase regulations on social media companies. The government should increase regulation because social media has become increasingly dangerous. So many young girls get cat fished by grown men and then raped or stolen. You have no true idea who you are talking to sometimes. Another thing is there is so much fake news out there that is leading people astray from the truth. If more regulations are put in place everyone will be safer.

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    I think that the government should increase regulations on social media companies. The government should increase regulation because social media has …

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  • Emily from Kentucky

    The government should have the power to increase regulations on social media. Social media is a danger to all Americans. It leads to sex trafficking, body image issues, false spread of information, and many more. It’s a detriment to society, and it’s the government’s job to step in to keep America safe. Yes, people would be upset with some of the changes being made, but these changes are necessary. On could argue that it is unconstitutional to restrict social media rights because it infringes on the freedom of speech. On the other hand, I argue that it is necessary and proper to intervene and prevent the newer generation along with the affected generations from the harm of social media. It has been proven that social media causes a lot of depression in teens. In addition, it distracts all users from getting done important tasks. Along with distractions, much of the information is false. For example, I read on the internet that Abraham Lincoln stated during his presidency that we cannot trust everything we read on the internet. Lincoln never lies so this must be true. Wrong. There was no internet during his presidency, but the internet says it despite the lack of veracity.

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    The government should have the power to increase regulations on social media. Social media is a danger to all Americans. It leads to sex trafficking, …

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  • Reid from Washington

    I believe social media should be regulated for the safety and security of its users, but should not be regulated as far as removing people’s opinions. Cyberbullying is dangerous and had even led to self harm and suicide before. social media protection regulations would stop this type of cyberbullying from hurting people. Social media is also a large spreader of misinformation, and regulating posts with dangerous misinformation would be important to keep people safe on the internet. Sometimes misinformation can lead to mass chaos and confusion. “In most Western democracies, you do have the freedom of speech. But freedom of speech is not an entitlement to reach. You are free to say what you want, within the confines of hate speech, libel law and so on. But you are not entitled to have your voice artificially amplified by technology.” (BBC news). Social media can also be a way for radical groups to target specific groups of people and attempt to harm them. This can be dangerous and threatening to minority groups. Regulating radical posts and posts targeting minority groups would lead to a safer and better social media experience. Regulating radical posts and posts targeting minority groups would lead to a safer and better social media experience.

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    I believe social media should be regulated for the safety and security of its users, but should not be regulated as far as removing people’s opinion…

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  • Trent from Washington

    I believe that social media should be regulated as social media has such a heavy impact on people lives. We should be able to see if the news is trusted or if it’s targeted towards people.

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    I believe that social media should be regulated as social media has such a heavy impact on people lives. We should be able to see if the news is trust…

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  • Jonathan from South Dakota

    Yes. I believe that the government should interfere with social media on a microscopic level because people are comfortable with the Internet that we have now and forcing people out of this comfort zone will only cause problems and anger. I believe that the Government should just help out where they can, as Google sometimes warns you about “Scam Likely” websites or something similar. I don’t think online users/”Infulencers” should have to acquire a license to speak freely and i see that some of the arguments about this are “Governments should put restrictions on social media because if someone were to say this to a group of people in real life they would get in trouble” and i got this from https://www.entrepreneur.com/article/311352 in the Cons side of this argument. With that point that they make about people repeating the same stuff but in real life they always say something similar to “a Licensed teacher” or a “Licensed doctor” But that argument is irrelevant because let’s say just as a hypothetical situation, there were no officially licensed people giving out random advice but rather, it were just regular people. Now anyone with common sense would be able to tell the difference between someone giving false medical advice but if it were a child then they could probably convince a child. Then who’s fault is it? The person speaking? Or the parents of a child. I believe some of the social media problems come down to age. Our government should not punish everyone with multiple restrictions just because there are a few irresponsible parents who don’t monitor their children’s usage of social media. But kids aren’t the only problem with social media. There’s also, as in the same website I linked above, there are people from other countries who spread false information about elections in an attempt to have some sort of effect on the final result of the election. Now returning to one of my first points, we just need to have a more strict warning system where you can tell the difference between fake news and real news as easily as if it were a trustworthy newspaper article as opposed to tabloid papers. And for that there just needs to be reliable trustworthy sources and news media sites but in the end you can’t force anyone to read from a certain article it’s really all up to the individual person. To sum up my main point is that the government should have some power over social media but not too much where people find it uncomfortably different.

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    Yes. I believe that the government should interfere with social media on a microscopic level because people are comfortable with the Internet that we …

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  • Bennett from South Dakota

    The government should increase regulations on social media. The main argument to keep social media unregulated is that the first amendment freedom of speech protects your right to say anything you want. This is false, as the US already puts limits on the freedom of speech in many different ways. Increasing regulation on social media will allow social media to be a better place for actual information over information that is fake or wrong. Not only this but increasing regulations could help with hate speech online. Many people online are there only to spread hate towards others or other groups of people, and increasing regulations would reduce this.

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    The government should increase regulations on social media. The main argument to keep social media unregulated is that the first amendment freedom of …

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  • Bryten from South Dakota

    I think the U.S. government should regulate social media because people on social media are insane. They make things up all the time causing there to be fake news everywhere filling people’s minds with things that aren’t true. That makes people go crazy because they are scared about things that could happen but really wouldn’t. It then causes people to fight and then things can get really bad. People should be able to say what they want online, but if it’s fake news the government should be able to take it down. If the government doesn’t regulate what people say then people could say some really bad things online and no one would be able to stop them.

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    I think the U.S. government should regulate social media because people on social media are insane. They make things up all the time causing there to …

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  • Alexis from Washington

    Social media is a great way to receive news and keep in touch with family, but there’s fake news and criminals to keep in mind. According to ProCon.org “64% of people who have use Twitter for news say that they have encountered something they “later discovered wasn’t true…” A big reason for this is that anyone can post on these sites/apps.

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    Social media is a great way to receive news and keep in touch with family, but there’s fake news and criminals to keep in mind. According to ProCon.or…

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  • Ashley from Washington

    Many people are getting misinformed from posts on social media. People should be getting accurate information about current issues that may affect them.

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  • Tesfanesh from South Dakota

    The government should regulate Social Media. Social media is a platform that is made for people to express their opinions, sometimes those opinions are harmful to others. The suicide rate in teens with social media is higher than those without social media. Lawmakers should regulate social media because it would cause many people to be held accountable for their words and what they advise if the content is proven harmful or untrue.

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    The government should regulate Social Media. Social media is a platform that is made for people to express their opinions, sometimes those opinions ar…

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  • Ella from Virginia

    The U.S. Government should pass increased regulations on social media companies. In the past two decades, social media has had an unprecedented impact on the way information is shared and spread. While the news used to be presented in specific television slots for a limited amount of time, information is now constantly accessible. The government could not have anticipated the sheer amount of content being created and shared on social media today. The Government should have the power to regulate some of this information that is constantly in circulation. Additionally, social media sites have been notorious for failing to enforce their own regulations. Sites such as YouTube have failed to remove content promoting anti-Semitic and transphobic speech. On Twitter, videos and speeches by Donald Trump during the January 6 insurrection were only removed hours after they were posted and the damage had been done. Covid-19 misinformation has run rampant on social media, stirring fear and causing many to distrust scientists. These examples demonstrate that these companies are not properly handling the regulation of their sites. While concerns arise about the possible obstruction of free speech, the government is justified to enforce more regulations on social media sites. The First Amendment protects free speech, but that does not mean that citizens are free of consequences. Speech that is truly harmful and will incite violence is not protected under this amendment. Regulating social media speech that will cause harm is becoming a necessity. While the U.S. Government should not be completely restrictive, more regulations are clearly needed.

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    The U.S. Government should pass increased regulations on social media companies. In the past two decades, social media has had an unprecedented impact…

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  • Ethan from South Dakota

    The reason for me saying yes is because if we let business owners continue to run the regulations they do it might cost lives of innocent people in the future and if the government steps in or puts some regulations on the site of the social media then the number of lives to be taken could possibly go down for the near future.

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    The reason for me saying yes is because if we let business owners continue to run the regulations they do it might cost lives of innocent people in th…

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  • Matthew from Michigan

    social media is very destructive due to its targeting to is users, blocking users based on beliefs ones opinions, and exposing children to too much.

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  • Zachariah from Kentucky

    I don’t think there should be some regulation. This is because I believe everyone should have their own freedom of speech. But, they should not be able to talk negatively about anyone or anything without possible punishment. But by no means do I want the companies to be able to sway someone’s opinions based on what they think.

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    I don’t think there should be some regulation. This is because I believe everyone should have their own freedom of speech. But, they should not be abl…

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  • Derrick from Kentucky

    I believe it is important for social media to be built to be stronger and formed for better use to improve the future. Time and time again social media has proven to cause problems and distorts reality. An example of this is the distortion or slight twist of a story posted for everyone to see, and although not entirely a truthful story people may believe it. Depending on what the story tells will also depend on what outcome it will have, It could cause hundreds of problems that may target the government, the law, or a specific group of people or specific person. If social media is not improved/restricted then our current/newer generations will be affected highly.

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    I believe it is important for social media to be built to be stronger and formed for better use to improve the future. Time and time again social medi…

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  • Elizabeth from Missouri

    I said yes because there are a lot of suicides that happen every day with social media and that the websites don’t block those things and I think social medias should be more responsible for the actions that people take on line if the website is yours you are allowed to take things down when needed.

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    I said yes because there are a lot of suicides that happen every day with social media and that the websites don’t block those things and I think soci…

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  • Killian from Kentucky

    In a time of increasing advancement, where algorithms rule our daily online lives, social media companies can no longer claim section 230 to protect their bottom line. These companies have the resources to build algorithms that can target anything that may try to undermine fact and spread false and malicious information. However, this brings the concept of free speech into debate. While it is true that people should be allowed to speak their minds, we need to treat talking online in the same way we treat talking in a large crowd. The saying goes “don’t falsely shout fire in a crowded room,” in fact, the saying comes from a 1919 Supreme Court case which ruled that speech that was likely to incite panic was not protected under the first amendment. And now I ask you, in the last year and a half, what has been the most popular subject for false information? Covid-19. The spread of information that falsely purports the spread and existence of a very real and very dangerous virus is nothing but false and panic inducing. All you have to do is look at all the “protests” that have been formed about mandates and the like. And just like a virus itself, the more people see this information, the more people spread it, and it gets exponentially worse.

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    In a time of increasing advancement, where algorithms rule our daily online lives, social media companies can no longer claim section 230 to protect t…

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  • Noah from Kentucky

    The U.S Government has the responsibility and power to protect the safety and well-being of its citizens. In fact, Section 230 protects the social media companies from civil liabilities that could occur from removing or restricting content on their services that may be deemed inappropriate. However, Section 230 fails to protect the user of the social media platform. While companies can pick and choose what to regulate, they more often than not have lax restrictions that allow for dangerous violations of privacy to occur. The U.S. Government should have the power to manage these businesses that profit off user entertainment and enable the safety of all users across the platform, including the removal of those who abuse the media platform in a harmful way to other users. While this may seem to be too much power in the hands of the government, it is very similar to the Patriot Act, where citizens must give up some information in order to maintain the stability of national security.

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    The U.S Government has the responsibility and power to protect the safety and well-being of its citizens. In fact, Section 230 protects the social med…

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  • Colton from Virginia

    Yes, I believe that more regulations on social media would greatly benefit society. What would make these laws any different than other privacy laws created to increase our safety? Companies such as Facebook, Instagram, and Snapchat are recording information every second about our behavior, storing it, and creating a profile to predict our moves. They do this to make money off ads because if they can predict what or when you’ll click on, they can make more money off the ads they play for you. They use these tactics also to keep you addicted to their service. They might send you a notification every once and a while to get you back online, then play things you find interesting to keep you online. The only issue to this would be if the federal government has the power to do this. People could argue that this would be an infringement on their powers, but it could also be argued that these social media giants are infringing on our rights as consumers.

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    Yes, I believe that more regulations on social media would greatly benefit society. What would make these laws any different than other privacy laws c…

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  • Olivia from Virginia

    Congress should increase regulations on social media companies. They have caused extreme damage to democracy and have proven unable and unwilling to regulate themselves, so the government must step in. While the first amendment protects freedom of speech, it does not mean you can say whatever you want without consequences. Spreading blatantly untrue and downright harmful misinformation on social media has led to division in the union and has certainly caused deaths such as all the vaccine misinformation regarding Covid-19. While social media companies have rules against hate speech and terms of service outlining them, companies have failed to enforce them. In one such example, Twitter waited until after the January 6th Insurrection to ban former President Donald Trump from the platform despite multiple posts calling for violence and several reports from concerned users. Private companies can have whatever terms of service they like, but the platforms should only be allowed to be used by American citizens if they can properly enforce them. The ability to regulate social media is also within the government’s powers. Throughout our history, laws have been passed against monopolies and private companies for their actions as they were deemed harmful to citizens and the country. Having stricter rules against misinformation is as much of public service as breaking up trusts or protecting workers’ rights. According to the necessary and proper clause of the US Constitution, the government may make any law needed to enforce its power. To ensure domestic tranquility and protect American democracy, regulation for these companies is necessary. The lack of responsibility from social media companies and the damage they have caused means that the government must step in.

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    Congress should increase regulations on social media companies. They have caused extreme damage to democracy and have proven unable and unwilling to r…

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  • Ariana from California

    In our modern world of Facebook postings, and other social media outlets, communication is only a push of a button away. Being able to respond to a post without censorship based on what is said is the freedom every American enjoys. We should not get angry with people who offer a different point of view but listen and learn from their point of view with open debate. Regulation of social media would be a First Amendment challenge to our Freedom of speech. We should be allowed us to express our own interest and ideas posting comments on social media without being canceled and deleted because of the content, however, some regulation under the FCC is necessary.
    The world has grown larger bur communication can travel faster, and this combination has created a greater sphere of influence social media has as a publication. One can argue that social media sites have replaced the newspaper as our main source of information millions of people can access on their computer or smartphone. Therefore, laws should be changed to treat social media outlets the same as other media publications with liability for their contents posts and as public actors serving the worldwide community as a public need like the utility companies. For example, the phone company can not limit access to those who may or may not use their service.
    Freedom of speech serves as the cornerstone principle of democracy for our country granted to every citizen. Everyone has the right to their own opinion and can speak, write and publish them to be shared without the fear of persecution. It is important to express your individual opinion on issues that are important to you and that support the direction you would like our government to take. It is the ability to speak without the fear of censorship and retaliation. When the free flow of ideas is restricted to what they want you to know or hear, this is called censorship and it is happening now by Facebook and Twitter. By not reporting news that is happening and not posting content these companies can exercise their biased influence. We saw this during the recent election with social media platforms deciding not to cover stories and dissemination the news. We all are aware of terms like: “politically correct, fake news, woke, and cancel culture.” We must stop the spread of these actions from censoring our ability to exercise our freedom of speech will leads us to the path of socialism.
    Freedom of speech allows us to express our opinion and change laws based on elections and votes. Every person is equal, and no one should be allowed to deny your voice to be heard. We all must exercise our freedom of speech carefully and not exclude political viewpoints because of the content of their opinion. Facebook and Twitter should not be allowed to censor the comments of political comments or views they disagree with ideologically. The removal of their accounts based on the content of their speech should be a violation of based on the first amendment rights. These companies have grown too large to claim protection under the guise of private business. This classification would only increase their sphere of influence to shape our political elections, instead, they must be treated as high-tech global companies. The laws must be changed to include these social media sites as publication companies and hold them responsible for their content. In addition, they should not be allowed to limit access and censor individual accounts without facing the scrutiny of constitutional challenges to freedom of speech.
    In the end, the Constitution and its Amendments allow us to come together as a nation and move forward in the best interest of the country. Of course, nothing is perfect, and a few changes and adjustments here and there are always needed. The brilliance of our forefathers was to create a living document that changed with time and public sentiment through Amendments. I do believe it is the responsibility of social media to practice “free expression” in a responsible manner. I think social media sites have replaced our version of print media and that is why the laws should be changed and regulation is necessary for today’s high-tech society to allow everyone to have access to post content on social media without being blocked.

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    In our modern world of Facebook postings, and other social media outlets, communication is only a push of a button away. Being able to respond to a po…

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  • Sandra from South Carolina

    Federal law does not allow the regulation of social media platforms by the United States government. Thereby unconstitutional.
    Held: This decision holds grounds on the First Amendment, First Amendment section 230, telecommunications act of 1996-1997, implied by Pruneyard Shopping Center v. Robins. The following evidence compels this conclusion:

    The first amendment states that “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” We should pay attention to the fact congress and other governing bodies are the only entities subject to this declaration. Implying that private individuals, entities, and properties not owned by the federal government are not under liability of said law. Said this, when we agree to the terms and services of a social media platform, we are under a new set of “private” agreements. Complaints on censorship will be dismissed whether or not the media’s employees or algorithms are biased or not since the first amendment does not apply. There are plenty of other platforms to express our views like vimeo, youtube, dailymotion, and reddit. Therefore rendering the monopoly argument invalid, this is further endorsed by the telecommunications act of 1996 which allows anyone to “enter any communications business – to let any communications business compete in any market against any other.” In other words a deregulation of communication. If we’re-regulated our providers this would be a backwards movement. We can actually take advantage of this by creating out own platforms to fit our needs if we are unhappy with what’s provided.

    Going back to censorship….

    Often times censorship is aligned with the principles first amendment if posts are tsken down theyre are likely things not covered by this amendment which include, obcenity, child pornography, fighting words and threats. However there are times where said content, and misinformation, is not taken down, it is our responsibility to disregard and report this content as responsible citizens.

    The 1960’s Communications decency act 47 U.S.C. § 230 states

    “No provider or user of an interactive computer service shall be treated as the publisher or speaker of any information provided by another information content provider.” This means websites, blogs and forums will not be held accountable for the speech of other users.

    It is also our responsibility to determine if children and young teens should be on platforms that may display this content. There are many free services and features of our devices (that can also be developed by us) to fact check, monitor, and sort content.

    This may bring the argument that ignorance and obliviousness to misinformation is a problem. However it is not social media’s fault, we request these platforms’ services. Us as users should appeal to social media companies for reform not the government (it is unconstitutional to my determination regardless). Nevertheless, social media is attempting to keep up with flagging information. We should rather reform our education system rather than social media systems. We cannot leave legal issues to our politicians who do not comprehend the policy and science of social media.

    Stop using social media if it is affecting you negatively in any way.

    Other things to note:

    Inducement or Coercion of Benefits – 5 C.F.R. § 2635.702(a)

    explains that “You may not use or permit the use of your Government position, title, or any authority associated with your public office in a manner that is intended to coerce or induce another person, including a subordinate, to provide any benefit, financial or otherwise, to yourself or to friends, relatives, or persons with whom you are affiliated in a nongovernmental capacity.”

    Spreading misinformation and hate speech will likely get you banned from social media. We should keep in mind that we get “banned” by private enterprises rather than being sent to jail and trailed for these offences as if they were penalized by the government.

    For those who may think that there is no punishment for internet crimes, there is. You can use social media as evidence for litigation.

    My recommendation for solution are as follows:

    Government established a media, perhaps under necessary and proper with clause 8 “postal service” as an argument. If viable. Remains to be determined if constitutional. May need an amendment.

    Or closer ties between government and private industry to promote fairness that follows the first amendment.

    All quotes are accredited to the US department of justice and Cornell legal archives.

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    Federal law does not allow the regulation of social media platforms by the United States government. Thereby unconstitutional.
    Held: This decision ho…

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    • Jared from Missouri

      I agree because the government cant control what we do on the internet and its a free place to voice our opinion.

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    • Miriam from South Carolina

      I agree with Sandra!

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  • Andrew from South Dakota

    I believe that increasing social media regulations will not be a good idea. i feel like it will cause more problems than actually fixing them. if they have people policing the app and not reporting every bad thing that they see, they could get into a lot of trouble.

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    I believe that increasing social media regulations will not be a good idea. i feel like it will cause more problems than actually fixing them. if they…

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  • Dominic from South Dakota

    The amount of content on social media is massive whether you are looking for facts or misinformation there is a lot of it on every social media platform. This large amount of misinformation has people from both sides of the spectrum calling for the government to put regulations on social media platforms. Even though people are calling for the government to step in and make a change they should not step in because most platforms already have some kind of way to combat misinformation. Doing this can lead to much larger, much worse restrictions down the road.
    There is a lot of misinformation on social media regarding the covid vaccine and its effectiveness and it has led to a lot of deaths of the unvaccinated which needs to be stopped, but the responsibility of that should not fall onto the government. Even without social media, the same thing would still happen but to a lesser degree. After all, there would be people skeptical about the vaccine, those unvaccinated would still get sick, and in places, the mask mandate would spring up again giving, “mixed messaging of saying that you have to wear a mask when your vaccinated will tell the unvaccinated oh actually the vaccines do not work.” (CBS News, 2:46-2:52). This would reinforce the message to the unvaccinated to not get the vaccine meaning that even without social media there would still be problems with things like the covid vaccine.
    Some of the bigger social media platforms already have a system in one way or another that is supposed to deal with the misinformation. Instagram and Facebook use the same organization to help with the misinformation problem “Facebook uses third-party fact-checking organizations, which are International Fact-Checking Network (IFCN) certified fact-checkers that help stop the spread of misinformation at a faster rate, as well as making it easier for users to report fake news” (Parham) “According to Instagram, Facebook recently expanded its 45 global third-party fact-checking networks to Instagram to help review and identify false information.” (Parham). Twitter has used a similar method to how Instagram flags the misinformation “Claims on Twitter are categorized into three broad categories: Misleading information — statements that have been confirmed false by experts, Disputed claims — statements do not have a source and can not be proven true, and unverified claims — statements that could be true or false but are unconfirmed at the time of posting.” (Parham) they have also outlined that depending on the severity and amount of misinformation that is put on your account you can have your account terminated. These systems need to be updated and improved but there is a fine line between updating the systems enough and updating them in a way in which speech is getting restricted.
    There are instances in which there have been things over-regulated and censored that became a bad thing, not something that benefited the people. “The uses of art became utterly distorted under the Soviet system. Censorship was the tool and the cause. […] Censorship in the Soviet Union succeeded absolutely when government support of the arts became the only form of support available” (Wallach). If the government were to step in, a similar outcome could happen. This would be a very slow process for this to happen because of how much the companies are worth but it could be done to smaller apps. This has had slightly different degrees in places like China or North Korea already but this was achieved by outright banning social media in those countries, which is another outcome that people do not want.
    The misinformation on social media is a definite problem that the government should not step into social media censorship because that approaches a barrier people do not want to cross with censorship. Instead, they should assist in improving the already standing systems in place without introducing their systems.

    Sources:
    Parham, Kiara. “How Social Media Platforms Combat Fake News.” Dixie Sun News, 24 Oct. 2020, https://dixiesunnews.com/news/articles/2020/10/18/how-social-media-platforms-combat-fake-news/.

    Wallach, A. (1991). Censorship in the Soviet Bloc. Art Journal, 50(3), 75. https://doi.org/10.2307/777221
    CBS News. “Biden Accuses Social Media Platforms of ‘Killing People’ through Covid-19 Misinformation.” CBS News, CBS Interactive, 17 July 2021, https://www.cbsnews.com/video/biden-accuses-social-media-platforms-of-killing-people-through-covid-19-misinformation/.

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    The amount of content on social media is massive whether you are looking for facts or misinformation there is a lot of it on every social media platfo…

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  • Meric from Missouri

    I never had social media until it was used for group chats in sports. So I’m not sure but what I see of it it looks just fine .

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  • Hayden from Missouri

    Because I think if there is more rules the app would be worse.

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  • Zack from Missouri

    If parents dont like their kid on social media or they think that it is bad for them then they could take it away or put restrictions on the app. The more its regulated the more problems we would have.

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    If parents dont like their kid on social media or they think that it is bad for them then they could take it away or put restrictions on the app. The …

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  • Alayna from Missouri

    No, I don’t think it is fair to companies and individuals for the government to decide what regulations to put in place. I think this would go against freedom of speech, and it would allow government into business too much.

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    No, I don’t think it is fair to companies and individuals for the government to decide what regulations to put in place. I think this would go against…

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  • Jackson from Missouri

    I think the companies should handle their own platforms themselves. If you let our government regulate what is okay and not okay then no one would be able to speak their mind.

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  • Megan from South Dakota

    The government should not be able to increase regulations on social media. This is a bad idea considering the increase in power over our voices will upset citizens. Not only will this upset the people of America it will also make their voices and opinions seem belittled. The voices of the citizens of America are extremely important in running a successful government.

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    The government should not be able to increase regulations on social media. This is a bad idea considering the increase in power over our voices will u…

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  • Malena from Missouri

    I think that if people are concerned about what their children are reading/watching they should use the resources that are downloadable to restrict their specific device. Also, there will always be false information being spread there’s no way for it all to be filtered out.

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    I think that if people are concerned about what their children are reading/watching they should use the resources that are downloadable to restrict th…

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  • Spencer from South Dakota

    No, I don’t think that the government should regulate social media. There are definitely problems that need to be addressed but they should be handled by the company that owns the platform. I say this because if the government were to get involved,social media platforms would be safer for a while but its only a matter of time before people find a way around the regulations that would be set by the government. This would lead to a more serious problem that is already at hand.

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    No, I don’t think that the government should regulate social media. There are definitely problems that need to be addressed but they should be handled…

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  • Abbey from Texas

    It’s unconstitutional for the government to have regulations like that

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  • Brayden from Missouri

    I think the government should not be allowed to place further restriction on social media sites, but instead should encourage those companies to do it for themselves, since they would know the software and how it works better than the government. restricting social media could also paint the government as more controlling in some people’s eyes, causing more distrust between the people and their government.

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    I think the government should not be allowed to place further restriction on social media sites, but instead should encourage those companies to do it…

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  • Tyler from Missouri

    Social media is completely fine the way that it is there is nothing wrong with something that is optional you do not have to use social media in your life if you personally do not like social media than do not have to use it If they were to put regulations in place it would be very difficult and would just waste time from more important issues

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    Social media is completely fine the way that it is there is nothing wrong with something that is optional you do not have to use social media in your …

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  • avery from Missouri

    Yes, it is easy for misinformation to be spread. But, I have also read articles about people using social media to help solve crimes, (the netflix show ¨Dont F with cats¨), and even solve theories in pop culture. Social media also can be a toxic environment, especially for teenage girls with self image issues, but then again, social media is how we find out a lot of TRUTHFUL information.

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    Yes, it is easy for misinformation to be spread. But, I have also read articles about people using social media to help solve crimes, (the netflix sho…

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  • Emilie from Missouri

    The government should not have the power to regulate social media. I feel it is an invasion of privacy and should be left up to the parents.

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  • Rylee from Missouri

    I think the government should not put a restriction on social media because it is not their job to do so. I think it will waste time and take attention away from way more important things they could be worrying about. Misinformation will be spread regardless of social media and if people are worried about their kids on there then they should be parents and watch them/monitor their internet use- not expect someone else to do it for them.

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    I think the government should not put a restriction on social media because it is not their job to do so. I think it will waste time and take attentio…

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  • cayden from Missouri

    I think no the law should not have regulations on social media because we have the first amendment the right freedom of speech and we can use that to say anything rational. Now I do believe there are people out there that need to not talk so bad on some topics but overall no there should not be a regulation on social media.

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    I think no the law should not have regulations on social media because we have the first amendment the right freedom of speech and we can use that to …

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  • Danika from Missouri

    I do agree that social media should have more restrictions. However I don’t think the government should increase regulatations. If they do it would take away the freedom of what companies posted. Overall I think it comes down to those who are social media. Parents shouldn’t let their young kids have it, till they are old enough to understand right and wrong. If there are people who are bullying or harassing someone they should be reported and banned.

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    I do agree that social media should have more restrictions. However I don’t think the government should increase regulatations. If they do it would ta…

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  • aiden from Missouri

    the law does not regulate the media

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  • Jordan from South Dakota

    Do I think that the government should increase regulations on social media? No I don’t think it would be possible or constitutional. I will explain a couple reasons why. The first reason is that they would have so much information to patrol on social media. In the United States of America, there are roughly 330 million people. Approximately, 223 million people have some sort of social media. Which is 2 out of 3 Americans have social media. Billions and Billions of posts go up on social media every day. It seems impossible to patrol all social media posts. If the government steps in to say “facebook you can’t allow this.” However, on a different social media platform you can post the same exact things without it getting taken down. To sum up why I don’t believe it’s possible to fairly regulate social media. With the volume of posts in a day, how is it possible to sort through all posts even if you have 50,000+ people working on doing it. The second reason why I say no to the government increasing regulations is that it violates our freedom of speech. Freedom of speech is really important in our country. It is the very first amendment of our constitution. Our founding fathers wanted us to have our free speech. How do the people of America know that the government has stepped too far before it is too late. If the government increases regulations on social media, where do they stop? From what we have seen when the government steps too far we get places like Russia, North Korea, and Nazi Germany. Our founding fathers created our country a certain way so the people on top couldn’t have all of the power. It seems as the government makes more regulations they are trying to take the power away from us the people.

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    Do I think that the government should increase regulations on social media? No I don’t think it would be possible or constitutional. I will explain …

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  • Angier from New York

    The U.S. government should not increase regulations on social media companies as it would be unconstitutional. The first amendment protects the freedom of speech; restricting speech or ideas simply because they are disagreeable or factually incorrect is a very clear violation of constitutional rights. In addition, people are allowed to spread misinformation or participate in non-violent hate speech in physical conversations so it would be unreasonable to not allow them solely because it occurs on social media.
    Limiting speech that can be seen as offensive gives the government the power to decide what is appropriate speech. As supreme court justice Anthony Kennedy said, “A law that can be directed against speech found offensive to some portion of the public can be turned against minority and dissenting views to the detriment of all”. Because what constitutes as hate speech is extremely ambiguous, opinions contrary to those in power can easily be censored and deemed as hateful. People often say that such a democratic government like America could never become an authoritarian 1984 type government but it has happened to plenty of democracies in the past. For example, after Alexander Lukashenko was elected president of Belarus he began censoring the media and certain forms of speech. Today anyone who speaks against the government in Belarus can easily be convicted of hate speech, a single social media post could land someone in jail for years.
    Banning misinformation also allows the government to decide what is a fact. What if the government decided religion was misinformation because the existence of a god or deities is unprovable? What if those in power decided opposition to the government was misinformation? These are some of the exact reasons why the Supreme Court has consistently stated that “there is no such thing as a false idea” within the First Amendment. Federal Judge Frank Easterbrook explains, “Any other answer leaves the government in control of all of the institutions of culture, the great censor and director of which thoughts are good for us”. More widespread fact checking done by trusted media outlets would slow or even stop the spread of misinformation and protect us from the risks of heavy censorship.
    Banning hate speech or misinformation on social media will also not change the way the people with these ideas think and is only a bandage on an infected wound. Allowing people to participate in hate speech or misinformation gives the public the chance to identify these people and actually attempt to change their beliefs or socially punish them for these beliefs. For example, people who have made offensive comments on social media are usually shamed for their actions or in extreme cases even lose their jobs, showing them that their opinion is socially unacceptable and allowing them to change. Banning hate speech and misinformation would only cause people with hateful or factually incorrect beliefs to go underground, posing a much larger risk to society. For example, white supremacists have already been organizing in dark corners of the internet such as 4chan and banning hate speech or misinformation would lead to more people doing the same.
    If all non violent speech is protected under the First Amendment, then there is almost no chance of further government restrictions. If we give the government the power to regulate our right to free speech, where do we draw the line? We open the door to more government involvement in every aspect of our lives. The example of Mccarthyism in our not so distant past shows that the risk of political repression is very real in the U.S. Therefore we should not increase regulations on social media companies as it would set a precedent for further regulations of speech, religion, the press, peaceful assembly, the list goes on.

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    The U.S. government should not increase regulations on social media companies as it would be unconstitutional. The first amendment protects the freedo…

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  • Laney from Missouri

    no, I do not think that government should increase regulations on media platforms like stated in the article it will only do more harm than good and will in fact have a detrimental effect on the company and the users also social media was made for people all around to voice their opinions and get to know others with the same view point if we put more government regulations people will no longer have the freedom to voice there opinions

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    no, I do not think that government should increase regulations on media platforms like stated in the article it will only do more harm than good and w…

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  • Julian from South Dakota

    I believe that the government should not be able to regulate social media because the company already has standards about terms and services. Plus the company of the app usually has set in place some rules where if you exert you will get banned or booted for example, Alex Jones. He released a lot of hate in the community and various sites are stating that he was leading “purveyors of violent and sometimes racist ( Anti- Semitic) conspiracy theories. Alex Jones was booted off Apple, Facebook, YouTube, and Spotify.

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    I believe that the government should not be able to regulate social media because the company already has standards about terms and services. Plus the…

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  • Camryn from South Dakota

    I believe that the United States government should not increase regulations on social media companies. I think this because people have the freedom of speech which is stated in the 1st amendment so they should be able to comment and post whatever they want on their social media. They will face consequences for their negative actions on social media without government intervention because people are always holding each other accountable. An example of this is if someone were to post hateful comments about someone else and they were applying for a new job, that company would have the right to not hire them for their actions. Also, I believe that social media is a way for people to truly express themselves, and if there are too many restrictions then people may not know what they are really like. In sum, I believe that the U.S. government should not increase the amount of regulations on social media companies because people have the freedom of speech and they will automatically have consequences for negative actions.

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    I believe that the United States government should not increase regulations on social media companies. I think this because people have the freedom of…

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  • Grace from Ohio

    Social media apps should not be regulated more by the government. Free market ideals are dying fast in a world of empty government promises. Companies know their product better than the government ever will. Companies should have the right to define their own policies no matter how terrible some might believe they are. The market is what should regulate social media apps. It is what appropriately and correctly shows the demand of the populace. Government putting up regulations kills that accountability and honest reflection of the people. The 10th amendment stands out to me in relation to this topic. The US Federal government nor any state government has been given the right to make policy decisions for private companies. It’s the people who have the right to sway the decisions of companies as they are the only reason they make money. Yes, they make money from sponsorships and such, but those sponsorships mean nothing without the people who see them by using the apps. The only reason they have a stable and enormous income is because of the people who use the apps everyday. In closing, no the government should not regulate social media companies more than they already do. They should actually cut regulations for social media companies. The more the government stays out of a certain area, the better. Keep the power within the people, not the government. If people keep using these apps even though they hate their policies they are choosing to have the pros outweigh the cons.

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    Social media apps should not be regulated more by the government. Free market ideals are dying fast in a world of empty government promises. Companies…

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  • Jordan from Washington

    The government should not regulate social media, rather the companies should take measures themselves to make changes. The people have a right to say what they want as long as it is not a real threat, under the 1st amendment. Not everything said by an American online is fair game, but the majority of any threats made or hate speech is not serious and not a real concern. Not all sites have horrifically unsettling content. Sure there are platforms that have some of the worst content the internet has to offer, such as Twitter and IFunny, but others can be an overall positive experience with low cyberbullying rates like Linkedin and Pinterest. Media platforms being negatively affected has caused problems before. Multiple times now the U.S. government has tried to ban TikTok, it has never passed due to the backlash and how illogical it all is. There is no good logical reason that social media should be regulated due to the amount of grey area and instability of the whole concept.

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    The government should not regulate social media, rather the companies should take measures themselves to make changes. The people have a right to say …

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  • kendall from South Dakota

    I think that the government should not police social media regulations more than they already are. The amount of regulations and community guidelines that social media already has should keep unwanted things off of the internet. The increase of regulation may not let some people post things they want to even if it has nothing to do with harm. Lastly there aren’t that many things that can go wrong with social media, it can shut down for a little bit but then the companies usually get it up and running again in a short amount of time.

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    I think that the government should not police social media regulations more than they already are. The amount of regulations and community guidelines …

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  • Sheridyn from South Dakota

    The government should not put more regulations on social media companies, but instead allow them to come up with their own. Giving the government more social media control would only create more chaos and encourage people to find ways to go against the new policies. Instead, when questionable topics pop up on certain social media platforms, that specific social media company should be able to add their own regulations or make their own adjustments based on what they believe would solve the issue. That way, it wouldn’t create more chaos with the government getting involved, and it wouldn’t take away the rights of social media companies to manage their own platforms.

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    The government should not put more regulations on social media companies, but instead allow them to come up with their own. Giving the government more…

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  • Lilly from South Dakota

    The U.S. Government should not increase regulations on social media companies. People should have the ability to post what they want and speak their opinion and not be restricted to what they can say. Everyone is able to turn off their phone, delete a certain social media platform, or simply ignore what they are reading if they disagree or don’t like it. Eventually it could also cause more problems than its preventing because social media platforms know their sites better than governments do, so it is best to let them regulate what can and can’t be posted. This is why the U.S. government should not increase regulations on social media companies.

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    The U.S. Government should not increase regulations on social media companies. People should have the ability to post what they want and speak their o…

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  • Jacob from South Dakota

    In my opinion I do not see it reasonable for the government to intervene more on social media. Most people use social media for the fun of it and to stay in touch with your friends. If the government would intervene more we wouldn’t be able to have the conversations or have any freedom left. I believe that if the government intervenes more chaos would happen.

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    In my opinion I do not see it reasonable for the government to intervene more on social media. Most people use social media for the fun of it and to s…

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  • Addison from South Dakota

    Social media has grown exponentially over the years. With more growth come more issues, one of which being bullying. Companies such as Snapchat, Facebook and Instagram should do more to make it a friendly platform. However, this could go against the !st Amendment which is why the government should just stay out of it. They should leave it to the companies themselves to try and fix this issue.

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    Social media has grown exponentially over the years. With more growth come more issues, one of which being bullying. Companies such as Snapchat, Face…

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  • Connor from South Dakota

    I think Social media should not be regulated. Social media should be a place where people can express their feelings without getting in trouble with the government. Social Media platforms have regulations and if the government gets involved then there will be more and more people will get in trouble for speaking their minds or having a conversation. Also with the government being involved that means the 1st amendment right would be violated.

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    I think Social media should not be regulated. Social media should be a place where people can express their feelings without getting in trouble with t…

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  • Hailey from Washington

    I think that social media shouldn’t be regulated. Our first amendment says that the government cannot censor us. Doing this would be unconstitutional and wrong. If people can say what they want in public, why not on social media? The first amendment also says that we have freedom of speech. Being able to say our opinions is part of our rights. I also think that we should have the ability to research any information online we want. If the government is regulating what we want to read about, it seems very suspicious to me. We can solve any problems we have with other people’s opinions by not following them or just not reading their posts but having information taken away from us is unconstitutional.

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    I think that social media shouldn’t be regulated. Our first amendment says that the government cannot censor us. Doing this would be unconstitutional …

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  • gracelyn from Missouri

    i think that everyone has the right to speak their opinion and be able to post it on their own social media. people shouldn’t be aloud to bully others on social media but having your own believes, religion, and opinion is perfectly fine.

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    i think that everyone has the right to speak their opinion and be able to post it on their own social media. people shouldn’t be aloud to bully others…

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    • Jordan from Washington

      I believe that social media should not be regulated in any way by anybody. On USA today Amelia Irvine says, “ increased government interference into the inner workings of these companies would be a foolish mistake; the people, using the powers of the market, should have the final say on how these companies should police their platforms.” I completely agree with her, and the democracy we live in would vote the same way as me if there was a vote. That is for 2 main reasons. People are too soft or too hard nowadays and by that I mean, people either take things too seriously, or not seriously enough. That makes for bad social media because sarcasm isn’t seen the same way.
      On Forbes I found that, “The more difficult question is how to do this effectively while differentiating between their various forms. “ This to me is the problem with the debate. There isn’t gonna ever be a set agreement on what is, and what is not okay. With all the forms of internet and platforms there will be too many things to worry about such as who owns the website or company. If they made a set decision to regulate facebook and not snapchat for example, there’s gonna be a lot of controversy in the world we live in today. We have the freedom of speech, let us use it. Also on Forbes I found that, “ personalized editorial decisions based on your browsing behavior on their platforms, other websites (e.g. if you use Facebook or Google to login), and geolocation information taken from your cell phone.” The thing with this is everybody knows this happens. If you have a problem with it it is a simple solution, just don’t have a phone. We all know they do this and were all okay with it based on 97% of the United states population owning a phone. In conclusion, I believe that regulating social media would be a interference with our rights and shouldn’t ever happen.

      Irvine, Amelia. “Don’t Regulate Social Media Companies – Even If They Let Holocaust Deniers Speak.” USA Today, Gannett Satellite Information Network, 19 July 2018, https://www.usatoday.com/story/opinion/2018/07/19/dont-regulate-social-media-despite-bias-facebook-twitter-youtube-column/796471002/.

      School, Esade Business & Law. “Should Social Media Platforms Be Regulated?” Forbes, Forbes Magazine, 10 Feb. 2020, https://www.forbes.com/sites/esade/2020/02/10/should-social-media-platforms-be-regulated/?sh=6ee653993370.

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      I believe that social media should not be regulated in any way by anybody. On USA today Amelia Irvine says, “ increased government interference into…

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  • Francine from South Dakota

    No, it should not because, according to our first ten amendments, people have the right to say what they want to say; and the government can not clean up after other people’s messes they caused. They should not have to babysit people for the actions they commit by pushing other people on social media to feel as if they are being harmed or do not feel safe. According to CATO Institute, The United States highly values individual speech in the public sphere. Apart from these exceptions, speech by and for social media users may be presumed to be free of government regulation. The government should not get any more involved because things did not end well the last time one did.

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    No, it should not because, according to our first ten amendments, people have the right to say what they want to say; and the government can not clean…

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  • kayla from Missouri

    no i choose not to vote because i am not apart voting for who or for what.

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  • Kaitlin from Colorado

    Concerns over social media censorship suffer a misunderstanding of what censorship is in the first place. American Republicans argue that social media companies engage in censorship by removing some conservative voices (usually with cause in the event of speech that breaks the company’s terms of service) from their platforms. However, censorship refers to an activity that only a government, an institution with a monopoly on the use of force, can practice. If a government censors speech, that speech cannot be engaged in without the threat of government punishment, of the police and military arm of society. Twitter removing the account of an inflammatory conservative is not censorship: this person could simply move their speech to another platform or start their own platform. They are not being forcibly told to stop speaking by an institution with the authority to detain, fine, and harm them. In fact, they do not have a right to the platforms created by social media companies. These are private platforms, no different from a private store where one is not allowed to say whatever one wishes but is bound by the rules of the store. Companies enforcing their terms of service is not cause for regulation.

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    Concerns over social media censorship suffer a misunderstanding of what censorship is in the first place. American Republicans argue that social media…

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  • Liv from North Carolina

    Lots of misinformation is spread daily on social media, and this is due to the fact that there are many users, especially recently since the pandemic hit. However, the government should not be regulating social media anymore than they already are. Due to political parties being so divided and argumentative, it can lead to censorship and more misinformation could be spread. It sounds like a good idea on paper, but in action, it can get abused.
    Since the 2020 elections, fact checkers were added to platforms, such as Instagram and Twitter. These devices are very beneficial, but they should be the farthest the government goes when it comes to regulation; any farther, and Americans will begin watching the rise of censorship. “While the goals of most regulatory programs enjoy broad public support…regulation usually comes down to detailed rules…that can be highly costly and burdensome to those who must comply with them.” (Beales, et al., 2017) This means that opinions will begin to be nitpicked or “fact-checked” leading to them to be removed and deleted.
    If the government did decide to regulate social media more, we would see a repeat in history. Allowing something as power hungry as our government to regulate the media can lead to more harm than good. Historically, 1917 marked the year when censorship became prominent in the USSR. President Vladmir Lennin founded the idea alongside the Communist Party that advocates for a classless society and cultural equality. (Chen, 2020) It sounds promising, but when you look at how the Russians were treated during Lennin’s reign, it was a dictatorship.
    Russians only learned one way and were only allowed to speak in one way, suppressing freedom of speech. The government didn’t want to hear anything negative about itself; author Amei Wallach (1991) made a very good point in her journal, Censorship in the Soviet Bloc, “‘Russians were afraid of Russians.’”
    You could argue that same point for Americans. Sure, our government isn’t communist, but restricting freedom of speech through government regulation can make it one. Social media is a good platform to use when giving counterarguments to certain subjects, and sure, misinformation is spread a lot easier, but that’s why the fact checker was placed.
    With the recent increase of social media deleting certain kinds of content and encouraging others, you can already see a bit of prejudice depending on the platform. Everyone should have a right to speak up about a topic they feel is important to them, and it should be taught to do your own research before believing what you read because a lot of it is false. Social media is known to be fake, not just with politics but with daily lives too. It can fill people, especially teenagers with jealousy when they see a model they look up to or their friend on vacation. Social media was never meant to be taken seriously, so misinformation being spread is not surprising. The government should not get anymore involved because the last time one did, things did not end well.

    References
    H. Beales, et al., “Government Regulation: The Good, The Bad, & The Ugly”, released by the Regulatory Transparency Project of the Federalist Society, June 12, 2017 (https://regproject.org/wp-content/uploads/RTP-Regulatory-Process-Working-Group-Paper.pdf).
    Chen, J. (2021, September 21). What is communism? Investopedia. Retrieved October 14, 2021, from https://www.investopedia.com/terms/c/communism.asp.

    Wallach, A. (1991). Censorship in the Soviet Bloc. Art Journal, 50(3), 75. https://doi.org/10.2307/777221

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  • m from Missouri

    no because the government should stay out of communication services so that they don’t impede the freedom of speech or use it as a control mechanism or block communication of specific views between people.

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    no because the government should stay out of communication services so that they don’t impede the freedom of speech or use it as a control mechanism o…

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  • Jenna from Kentucky

    The U.S. government should NOT increase regulations on social media companies. This is the United States of America , literally the First Amendment in our Constitution is the freedom of speech. Our freedom of speech shall not be prohibited. Twitter permanently banned former President Donald Trump back in January, which was a violation of his rights as a U.S. citizen , and yet there was no constitutional protection of his free speech in America. Wake up America.

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    The U.S. government should NOT increase regulations on social media companies. This is the United States of America , literally the First Amendment in…

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  • Matthew from Kentucky

    I don’t think should increase the regulations for social media. Can’t really think how much more they can add to the regulations. They are doing great on blocking the bad stuff on social media. For example, Twitter does great at keeping up to date on blocking the bad things posted and the posts that aren’t following the rules on the app. Youtube has big regulations for the kids, when posting a video you have to say if the video is made for kids or not. Youtube will send out the videos that are made for the kids and will keep the videos that aren’t away from them.

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    I don’t think should increase the regulations for social media. Can’t really think how much more they can add to the regulations. They are doing g…

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  • Mackenzie from Kentucky

    The government should not increase regulation. They would be taking away the people’s freedom to explore and express their opinions. If the government increased regulations then social media would turn into a dictionary filled with facts rather than people with opinions. I do believe that social media needs to change for the better in regards to bullying, stereotyping, and addiction; but, the regulations within these articles that the government would eradicate are unnecessary. Overall, it is unconstitutional to Americans who have the freedom of speech to say what they want and express their opinions (even if they are unfactual).

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    The government should not increase regulation. They would be taking away the people’s freedom to explore and express their opinions. If the governme…

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  • Danny from Kentucky

    I think the government should increase regulations on social media platforms. I can see it harm freedom of speech but sometimes freedom of speech can spread false information. For example, about 4 years ago Covington Catholic was in the news from the March for Life situation. The problem with this situation was that the news and media believed it was the students who walked up to the Indian Cheif when it was really the other way around. It can be something as small as false information on medication to something as big as the death of someone who wasn’t actually killed. I feel like sometimes social media can do more harm than good so I believe that yes, the government should increase regulations on social media platforms.

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    I think the government should increase regulations on social media platforms. I can see it harm freedom of speech but sometimes freedom of speech can …

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  • Aaron from South Dakota

    like the article said, it would create more harm than good due to the fact that people won’t be able to express themselves as freely as they would like to.

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  • MK from South Carolina

    Part of the Bill of Rights includes the freedom of speech and the freedom to have your own opinions. It is understandable that the government may want more control over social media, but once you give an inch there is always a chance they will take the mile. If the government can patrol who posts concerning ‘minor safety’, they may start patrolling who posts Anti-American content and then it becomes an issue of personal liberties.

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    Part of the Bill of Rights includes the freedom of speech and the freedom to have your own opinions. It is understandable that the government may want…

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  • Peter from Alabama

    I believe the U.S. Government should not increase regulations on social media. While I believe social media corporations are extremely flawed and often act in unethical or even illegal ways, I believe that the government would, for the most part, hurt social media and the good that it does with “regulations”. However, social media corporations put regulations on people and on speech themselves, such as when they banned President Trump for “misinformation”. While I will not give my say as to whether what is labelled as “misinformation” is actually misleading or not, what gives social media companies the right to determine what is truth on the internet? Obviously there are truths, but there is also free speech. People should be able to say what they want to say online, even if it is false or leads people to believe something that is false. That is part of freedom of speech. Social media companies create problems when they ban people and companies from platforms because they have differing opinions or political beliefs than the people behind the social media. Some of the things social media companies have done are outright illegal, such as leaking information and actively discriminating on their platforms. Why then, should the government not step in and regulate social media? Well regulation of social media would also end up hurting the people who use it, and it has been tried. It would only allow social media companies to use the regulations to their advantage and continue to take advantage of their users. I believe that the government should not regulate social media, but should review and prosecute social media corporations for illegal activity and silencing of speech. The social media companies should have their own freedoms in our capitalistic, democratic society, but many of the things that they do oppose their own purposes and uses for the general public, so despite the polarization and the misleading statements that can pop up on social media, for the sake of the people who have already been abused by social media companies, I believe that regulations should not be put on social media as it is not the government’s place to dictate how these companies run, but it is their job to take specific action to stop any illegal or unethical actions by the companies.

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    I believe the U.S. Government should not increase regulations on social media. While I believe social media corporations are extremely flawed and ofte…

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  • Jasper from Virginia

    The U.S. government should not increase regulations on social media companies. If the government were to go through with something like this, it would harm companies’ freedoms to run their own networks. This would also result in a violation of the right to free speech because the government would be regulating what is posted and seen by others. The first amendment states that “Congress shall make no law…abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press.” This means that Congress would have a thin line to walk when making legislation to regulate social media because they are prohibited from having any impact on free speech. It is an American tradition and a right of all citizens to freely express themselves, and increased regulations would undermine this freedom for social media companies and their users. Those who argue that regulations should be increased claim that a lack of control over these services has resulted in the spread of hate speech and false information. This issue is in the hands of each individual company and each individual user because it is the responsibility of Americans to use their free speech at their discretion (as long as they do not make threats or incite violence), not the governments to control.

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    The U.S. government should not increase regulations on social media companies. If the government were to go through with something like this, it would…

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  • Jayden from Kentucky

    The government should not increase regulations on any social media company. This is because social media companies are private organizations and should be allowed to do what they want. The companies have the right given by the constitution to do what they please with their own private organization.

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    The government should not increase regulations on any social media company. This is because social media companies are private organizations and shoul…

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