By Annie Greyer, Ryan Nobles, Whitney Wilde and Zachary Cohen | CNN
The House Select Committee probing the deadly Capitol riots on January 6 sent letters to 15 social media companies, including Facebook, YouTube and Twitter, to try to understand whether there was misinformation and attempts to subvert elections by foreign and domestic actors on their platforms. How were you present?
The panel specifically asked for data and analysis on domestic violent extremists linked to attempts to reverse the 2020 election, especially around the January 6 attacks.
Speaker Benny Thompson asked to provide information in two weeks.
In addition to requesting a paper trail of information, the selection committee also asked these social media companies to provide information on how they attempted to remove misinformation on their platforms and where there could be holes in doing so. Huh.
According to CNN’s latest tally, nearly 600 people have been arrested in connection with the January 6 events, many of whom were tracked down due to videos and postings on various social media platforms. One of those platforms was Parlor, a conservative social media site so rife with false allegations of electoral misinformation and voter fraud that it was temporarily suspended by Amazon Web Services and operated effectively offline. .
Many in the crowd were white supremacists, QAnon conspiracy theorists and members of right-wing groups such as the Proud Boys.
In the days just after the uprising, major social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter suspended the accounts of influential promoters of election conspiracy theories – including Trump himself. But the revolt has raised many questions as to whether social media companies could have done more to stop the spread of misinformation on their platforms.
These letters build largely on requests sent Wednesday to several federal agencies and the National Archives that describe how the committee is building its case for explaining gaps in security failures and how former President Donald Trump and His class worked to reverse the 2020 election results.
Targeted social media platforms are: 4chan, 8kun (formerly known as 8chan), Facebook, Gab, Google+, Parlor, Reddit, Snapchat, Telegram, The Donald.win, TikTok, Twitch, Twitter, YouTube and Zello. The letters seek “a number of records, including data, reports, analysis and communications, spanning the spring of 2020.”
CNN previously reported that the select committee had developed a solicitation plan for social media and telephones that includes looking at actual metadata from January 6 to 18 months in advance.