Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey will appear before the Senate Intelligence Committee Wednesday morning to discuss actions their companies have taken to thwart foreign influence campaigns targeting the 2018 midterm elections.
Lawmakers on Wednesday grilled top executives from Facebook and Twitter about their efforts to prevent foreign governments from influencing US politics, but they saved their harshest criticism for Google and its decision not to send a top representative to testify on Capitol Hill. Follow the live blog below.
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Facebook, Twitter and other technology firms have been on the defensive for many months over political influence activity on their sites and concerns over user privacy.
"We fixed it", Dorsey said.
The Senate Intelligence Committee has been looking into efforts to influence US public opinion for more than a year, after USA intelligence agencies concluded that Kremlin-backed entities sought to boost Republican President Donald Trump's chances of winning the White House in 2016.
The testimony comes as some Republicans say conservatives have been censored on social media.
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The hearing was the fourth in a series examining how social media platforms have evolved from fun time-wasters into what the committee chair, Senator Richard Burr, called "a threat to our democracy".
Twitter's Dorsey also will testify at a House of Representatives hearing on Wednesday that the company "does not use political ideology to make any decisions", according to written testimony also made public on Tuesday.
Dorsey also rejected allegations that Twitter operates on the basis of political bias, AFP reported. Some Republicans, including President Trump, have pushed the idea ahead of the elections that Twitter is "shadow banning" some in the GOP because of the ways search results have appeared.
In the Senate, both Burr and Warner pressed the social media companies to do more.
Republican Senator Marco Rubio said the company might have skipped the hearing because it was "arrogant".
The back-and-forth with Google is the latest in a year's worth of attempts by Congress to force the companies to focus more sharply on the Russian interference issue.
The news is the latest sign that the United States government, which has so far been reluctant to regulate internet companies, is scrutinising them more closely.