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Examining the Intersection of Politics and Tech Policy in 2023

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The year 2023 is likely to be dominated by Republican efforts to shift the focus of tech policy initiatives in the newly controlled House of Representatives. The party plans to direct attention towards the alleged censorship campaigns carried out at the behest of the Biden administration and the perceived liberal bias in tech. Republicans have long claimed that tech companies have a bias against conservatives, but the recent success in flipping the House gives their claims significant political capital. The so-called Twitter Files, which were debunked by many as weak evidence, have further fueled the anger of Republicans, who want to convince the public that tech companies are taking orders from Democrats. However, this focus on alleged censorship may actually be a welcome change for tech companies, compared to the previous Democratic leadership's focus on investigating business practices and antitrust violations. The upcoming tech-related Supreme Court cases in 2023 could fundamentally change online protections guaranteed by the First Amendment and Section 230 of the Communications Decency Act. Also Read: Why Chinese CCTV Cameras on UK Sites Are Now Banned? For instance, the constitutionality of de-platforming laws in Texas and Florida will be determined, which would subject tech companies to lawsuits if they remove certain political content. If the court sides with Republican lawmakers, other states may follow suit with similar laws. Additionally, two anti-terrorism cases, Twitter v. Taamneh and Gonzalez v. Google, will determine whether algorithmically recommended content is still protected under Section 230. The Supreme Court's decision could limit Section 230 protections, leading to a different internet with less opportunity for expression. Despite a growing trend of governments expanding their digital surveillance capabilities, experts suggest that a convergence of political oddities could lead to the death of Section 702 of the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act (FISA). Section 702 targets non-U.S. individuals abroad, but critics argue that the data obtained via 702 can also include communications between a target and a U.S. citizen, creating a loophole for federal agencies to spy on Americans. The mutual disdain for Section 702 by both Trump Republicans and leftist in Congress could lead to an unlikely alliance and result in the tool's expiration. To keep track of the tech policy landscape, it is important to follow key players in the field such as Lina Khan, the new chair of the Federal Trade Commission, who is expected to bring a new era of progressive antitrust reform. Ted Cruz, the ranking Republican member on the Senate Commerce Committee, will likely stand in the way of tech legislation, particularly related to privacy. Finally, Amy Klobuchar, one of the leading Senate lawmakers advocating for new antitrust laws targeting tech, will also play a significant role in shaping the future of tech policy.

By Raulf Hernes

If you ask me raulf means ALL ABOUT TECH!!


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