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FCC will move to regulate social media after censorship outcry

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On Thursday, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai said that the agency will seek to regulate social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter at the behest of the Trump administration’s executive order signed earlier this year.

“Members of all three branches of the federal government have expressed serious concerns about the prevailing interpretation of the immunity set for in Section 230 of the Communications Act. There is bipartisan support in Congress to reform the law,” Pai said in a statement Thursday. “Social media companies have a First Amendment right to free speech. But they do not have a First Amendment right to a special immunity denied to other media outlets, such as newspapers and broadcasters.”

In May, President Donald Trump signed an executive order targeting tech companies, like Facebook and Google, and Section 230 of the Communications Act, the pivotal internet law that provides them broad legal immunity over content posted by their users. The order instructed the Commerce Department to draft a petition prompting the FCC to reinterpret the law. The Department submitted its petition to the FCC in July.

On Thursday, Pai said that the commission’s general counsel said that “the FCC has the legal authority to reinterpret Section 230.” He continued, “Consistent with this advice, I intend to move forward with a rulemaking to clarify its meaning.”

The FCC did not immediately respond to requests for comment from The Verge seeking clarification on the rulemaking process.

“We’re in the midst of an election. The president’s executive order on Section 230 was politically motivated and legally unsound,” Democrat Commissioner Geoffrey Starks said in a statement Thursday to The Hill. “The FCC shouldn’t do the president’s bidding here.”

“The timing of this effort is absurd,” Democrat Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel said in a statement. “The FCC has no business being the President’s speech police.”

Pai’s decision to move forward with rulemaking follows a series of moderation decisions on Wednesday made by Facebook and Twitter against a New York Post article regarding former Vice President Joe Biden’s son, Hunter Biden, who has been the subject of political attacks from the right throughout the 2020 presidential election. Facebook reduced the reach of the story, saying that it was eligible for third-party fact-checking. Twitter went even further, banning linking to the story entirely. In a thread Wednesday night, Twitter cited a 2018 rule against posting hacked information as justification for its decision.

These moves from Facebook and Twitter incited an outcry over conservative bias from Republicans. On Thursday, Republicans on the Senate Judiciary Committee signaled that they would subpoena Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey to testify about the decision at a hearing on October 23rd.

“This is election interference, and we are 19 days out from an election,” Sen. Ted Cruz (R-TX) said Thursday. “Never before have we seen active censorship of a major press publication with serious allegations of corruption of one of the two candidates for president.”

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Keep That Hotdish Hot With 65% Off a Luncia Casserole Carrier, Only $11 With Promo Code

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Best Home DealsBest Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.

Luncia Double-Decker Dish Carrier | $11 | Amazon | Promo code SDDU9S7F

It has been a long time since the days we could safely have a potluck or other gatherings, but we have a fantastic deal perfect for once those times return. These double-decker Luncia dish carriers can be had for 65% off when you add promo code SDDU9S7F at checkout and clip the coupon on the site (it’s just below the price). These holders fit 9″x 13″ sized baking dishes.

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That means you can insulate and keep two dishes of food warm for only $11 instead of $30. What’s more, your Luncia carrier will arrive by Christmas if you order today as a Prime member.

Just add promo code SDDU9S7F and clip the 5% off coupon to bring the price down to $11 for the blue or the grey option.

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Grab this offer while it’s still around!


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Conquer Your Pup’s Dander and Fur With $700 Off a Cobalt or Charcoal Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum

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Best Home DealsBest Home DealsThe best home, kitchen, smart home, and automotive deals from around the web, updated daily.

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Cobalt) | $200 | Best Buy

Bobsweep PetHair Plus Robot Vacuum & Mop (Charcoal) | $200 | Best Buy

Allergies can be bad enough as the seasons change. Don’t let pet hair and dander add to that by vacuuming it up early and often. That chore is easier said than done— unless you have a robot vacuum to do the work for you. This lovely bright cobalt Bobsweep PetHair Plus robot vacuum and mop, only $200 today at Best Buy seems like an ideal option. That’s a whopping $700 off, by the way.

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You can get the same deal for the charcoal version of the robot vac, too. This model is not only specially made for picking up pet hair, it self docks and charges when it’s finished with the work.

It also comes with a mop attachment, so it can take care of those kitchen floors for you as well. Grab it while it’s still available for this fantastic price!

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Apple will replace AirPods Pro for free with faulty noise cancellation, static or crackling

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Today, exactly one year after Apple first launched the AirPods Pro — and thus the same day the very first AirPods Pro owners will see their one-year warranties expire — Apple has launched a repair program that offers free repairs or replacements for another whole year if your AirPods Pro experience issues with noise cancellation or static.

Specifically, Apple will fix:

Crackling or static sounds that increase in loud environments, with exercise or while talking on the phone

Active Noise Cancellation not working as expected, such as a loss of bass sound, or an increase in background sounds, such as street or airplane noise

Apple says only a “small percentage of AirPods Pro” are affected by the issues, but it apparently wasn’t just an early batch — Apple says affected units were manufactured “before October 2020,” meaning every AirPods Pro ever made might be eligible. That’s quite a recall if so. Apple says it will repair faulty AirPods Pro for two years after you first buy them.

We’ve heard complaints about degraded noise cancellation before, and at least one Verge editor has replaced their AirPods Pro under warranty. It’s nice to hear that Apple isn’t just cutting buyers off as soon as that warranty expires.

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