The January 6 selection committee summoned Alphabet, Meta, Reddit and Twitter on Thursday for the record as part of its investigation into the Capital rebellion.
Why this matters: The panel said the four social media companies have critical information related to the spread of misinformation, the 2020 election and efforts to end domestic violent extremism.
- AlphabetAccording to the committee, YouTube served as a platform to communicate plans for the January 6 attack, including through livestreams.
- metaThe U.S.’s social media platform, most prominently Facebook, was reportedly used to spread conspiracy theories about the election, coordinate the Stop the Stealth movement, and share messages of hate and violence.
- a reddit According to the committee, the community called “r/The_Donald” gained traction in 2020 before migrating to the website TheDonald.win, which hosted “significant discussions and planning” for the rebellion.
- Twitter The panel noted in a release that the plans were also used to communicate and escalate allegations of electoral fraud, “including by the former president himself”. The company was reportedly warned that its users were using the platform to coordinate potential violence before January 6.
The committee said the summons comes after an “inadequate response” to prior requests for information.
What are they saying: “Two major questions for the select committee are how the spread of misinformation and violent extremism contributed to the violent attack on our democracy, and what steps – if any – have social media companies taken to radicalize their platforms to violence. to prevent it from becoming a breeding ground for the disease,” committee chair Benny Thompson (D-Miss.) said in a statement.
- “It’s disappointing that after months of busyness, we still don’t have the documents and information we need to answer those basic questions. … We can’t let our important work get delayed any more.”
- “We have received the summons and will continue to work with the committee on their request,” a Reddit spokesperson said.
- Twitter declined to comment. Spokespersons for Alphabet and Meta did not immediately respond to a request for comment.