The headline reads “…in fight against fake news during election.” The headline should ACTUALLY read “In Fight to Censor Opinion and Opposition.” This, in fact, is what France is doing in its recent announcements to crack down on ‘fake news’ being spread by Big Social.
In his New Year address to the media, French President Emmanuel Macron announced plans for a new law to impose tighter restrictions and heavy sanctions on social networks like Facebook and Twitter to stop spreading fake news during an election campaign.
Though the exact details of the proposed bill are not yet known, Macron said that the new law would boost transparency by requiring online social media platforms, including Instagram, Pinterest, Reddit, Snapchat, Telegram, WhatsApp and YouTube, to reveal who is paying for sponsored content, and impose a cap on how much one can spend on it.
France would ban access to Facebook or Twitter if they spread fake news
“We will make changes to our legal system to protect democracy from this fake news,” he said.
In the event a social network is spreading fake news, anyone would be able to bring the case before a judge to suppress that content, close the user’s account or even totally block the access to the social network.
In addition, France’s broadcast regulator CSA – the equivalent of the FCC – will be given increased authority to fight against any destabilization attempt by television channels controlled or influenced by foreign states.