DCMS Select Committee issues damning report over Fake News and Social Media

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30 Jul 2018
DCMS Select Committee issues damning report over Fake News and Social Media

Parliament’s Digital, Culture, Media & Sport Select Committee has published a highly critical report into ‘fake news’ and the manipulation of social media - especially Facebook - by Brexit campaign groups, Russian agencies and private election influencers, including the now defunct Cambridge Analytica.

It is an interim report by the Committee, of which Newcastle’s MP Paul Farrelly is a long-standing Labour member, following recent damning verdicts by the Information Commissioner over illegal data-sharing and the Electoral Commission over breaches of spending limits by the lead Brexit campaign group, Vote Leave, in the 2016 EU referendum.

A copy of the interim report can be found by clicking on this link and the accompanying press release by clicking here.

‘This has been a long-running investigation, which has opened up new avenues of enquiry at every twist and turn,’ Mr Farrelly said.

‘Election law, data protection enforcement and the penalties for breaking the rules have a long way to go to catch up with the activities of unscrupulous organisations in the digital age, and the government needs to act urgently to show it takes the concerns seriously.’

‘Social media, too – including Facebook – also need to take more responsibility for what they carry, not just because democracy runs the risk of being perverted, but to make themselves safe for people to use without abuse, manipulation and a torrent of total misinformation.’

‘We’ll return to all these issues in a final report later this year, after interviewing further witnesses and seeing the Government’s promised White Paper on making social media safer.’


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