U.S. Dwelling panel subpoenas social media companies in Jan. 6 attack probe

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Jan Wolfe and Sarah N. Lynch and Elizabeth Culliford

WASHINGTON — The U.S. Dwelling of Representatives committee investigating the Jan. 6 attack on the Capitol subpoenaed Fb parent Meta, Alphabet , Twitter and Reddit on Thursday, seeking out data about how their platforms had been extinct to relieve spread misinformation and violent extremism in the failed advise to overturn the 2020 presidential election.

“We won’t enable our essential work to be delayed any further,” the Dwelling Take Commitee’s chairman, Bennie Thompson, mentioned in a inform.


The subpoenas are the most fresh reveal in the panel’s investigation into the causes of the attack on the Capitol by then-President Donald Trump’s supporters, and the role conducted by Trump, who has pushed faux claims that he misplaced a rigged election to Joe Biden.

“Two key questions for the Take Committee are how the spread of misinformation and violent extremism contributed to the violent attack on our democracy, and what steps – if any -social media companies took to prevent their platforms from being breeding grounds for radicalizing folk to violence,” Representative Thompson mentioned.

“It’s disappointing that after months of engagement, we aloof attain no longer have faith the paperwork and data important to retort these routine questions.”


The companies have faith until Jan. 27 to comply. Spokespeople for the four social media companies did no longer right away retort to requests for inform.

The committee has issued extra than 50 subpoenas and heard from extra than 300 witnesses. It’s anticipated to free up an duration in-between represent https://www.reuters.com/world/us/us-rental-panel-eyes-duration in-between-represent-by-summer-2022-jan-6-attack-2021-12-28 in the summertime and a closing represent in the tumble.

Social media platforms had been extensively blamed for amplifying calls to violence and spreading misinformation that contributed to the Jan. 6 strive to violently overturn the election outcomes.

In August, the panel requested 15 tech companies, alongside side the ones subpoened on Thursday as properly as TikTok, Snapchat, Parler, 4chan and others, for recordsdata linked to the get up.


In a letter despatched this week to Fb founder Trace Zuckerberg, Thompson mentioned that “despite repeated and explicit requests for paperwork” linked to Fb’s practices on election misinformation and violent mutter material, the committee had aloof no longer got these materials. Letters to the a couple of three CEOs contained an identical criticisms.

Alphabet and Google CEO Sundar Pichai, historic Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey and Zuckerberg had been also grilled by lawmakers final March in a hearing on misinformation about the role of their platforms in the Capitol get up. (Reporting by Sarah N. Lynch, Jan Wolfe and Elizabeth Culliford; Extra reporting by Sheila Dang; Editing by Jonathan Oatis and Alistair Bell)

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