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Guy Verhofstadt to push European Parliament to take measures against fake news

Guy Verhofstadt, the Belgian Member of the European Parliament and a proponent for a federalized Europe, is best known as the representative for the EU in the Brexit negotiations.

In a Facebook post yesterday, he criticized the failure of social media networks to curb the spread of viral fake news. More importantly, he intends to direct the European Parliament to come to a consensus on measures to take for the prevention of future disinformation campaigns such as the ones Russia had organized previously. Per Verhofstadt:

Europe needs it's own Mueller, to investigate the extent of Russian disinformation campaigns and other attacks on our democracies. In September I will push the European Parliament to such measures to clean up our internet and social media. It's time to fight back!

The statement was made in response to a Guardian report regarding the UK Department for Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) select committee's 18 month-long investigation into Facebook's recent missteps. Specifically, these are pertinent to its involvement with Cambridge Analytica and consequent misuse of user data, as well as its handling of the 2016 U.S. elections.

Said investigation confirmed that the misuse of Facebook (among other social platforms) was indeed an enormous liability to due democratic process. Given how crucial social media tends to be in swinging popular opinion, Facebook's refusal to investigate the matter could not be allowed to continue.

Verhofstadt's primary talking point appears to be the need for legislation that stresses accountability on online social platforms. Come September, we will likely know more about his and the EU's ideas for better regulation on this front.

Source: Guy Verhofstadt (Facebook) | Image: Time

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