Platform Accountability

We evaluate and develop legislative strategies to prevent misinformation and disinformation, voter suppression, hate speech, discriminatory practices, and other content that harm Black communities.

Joint Center President Speaks to Harvard Law School Students on Law & Tech

Joint Center President Spencer Overton virtually joined Harvard Law School’s 1L class to discuss how he first became interested in law and technology, digital technologies, Section 230, and more. During the discussion, Spencer explained how digital technologies have massive positive potential including helping small Black businesses connect with customers, and facilitating telehealth and virtual work.…

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Joint Center President Answers Additional Questions from Members of Congress on Disinformation Online

Joint Center President Spencer Overton provided additional written responses to questions from Members of Congress after his testimony at the Subcommittee on Elections of the Committee on House Administration hearing entitled “Voting Rights and Election Administration: Combating Misinformation in the 2020 Election.” Read Spencer’s full written responses to the follow-up questions (8-pages) here. Read Spencer’s…

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Joint Center President: Senate Tech CEO Hearing is a Play to Discourage Removal of Election Disinformation

Slate just published this commentary on today’s Senate hearing featuring the CEOs of Facebook, Google, and Twitter co-written by Joint Center President Spencer Overton and Professor Danielle Keats Citron. Their bottom line: “The Senate hearing six days before Election Day is an obvious play to chill social-media companies’ efforts to remove election disinformation. The goal is to ensure…

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Joint Center and GW Law Host Debate on Section 230 With Key Experts

The Joint Center partnered with George Washington University School of Law to host a debate entitled Should Congress Amend The Communications Decency Act to Address Discriminatory Ad Targeting by Social Media? Congresswoman Yvette Clarke (D-NY) and Congressman Mike Doyle (D-PA) provided opening remarks. Panelists included Boston University Professor of Law Danielle Keats Citron, Former Wikimedia…

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Joint Center Participates in Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s ‘Policy Meets Practice: Training in Action’ Series

Spencer participated in the first session of the Congressional Black Caucus Foundation’s “Policy Meets Practice: Training in Action” series. The session, entitled Voting Rights and Black America, had panelists discuss “tactics for effective voter mobilization and provide a historical lens of Black voter engagement methods that effectively influenced policy action and representation.” Other panelists included…

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Joint Center Participates in Howard University King Lecture Series on Voting Rights

On October 7, Joint Center President Spencer Overton participated in Howard University’s 2020-21 Gwendolyn S. and Colbert I. King Endowed Chair in Public Policy Lecture Series in a session entitled Seize Your Power: Your Voice, Your Vote. In the session, Spencer discussed voter suppression and how the COVID-19 pandemic is affecting Black voters. Other participants…

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Joint Center Joins National Urban League Panel on Social Media Regulation & Civil Rights

On October 20, Joint Center President Spencer Overton joined National Urban League (NUL)’s panel entitled Social Media Regulation: The New Frontier in the Fight for Civil Rights. In the panel, Spencer discussed voter suppression, Section 230, and disinformation online. Other panelists include U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (D-OR), FCC Commissioner Geoffrey Starks, National Black Justice Coalition…

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Joint Center Testifies to Congress on Misinformation in the 2020 Election

On October 6, Joint Center President Spencer Overton provided expert testimony at a congressional hearing entitled “Voting Rights And Election Administration: Combatting Misinformation In The 2020 Election.” In his opening statement, Spencer explained that online disinformation is not simply dividing our nation. Foreign and domestic actors are using lies to specifically target and suppress Black…

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