Tech companies won’t await U.S. to act on social networks laws, Microsoft’s president states – Reuters
New York City and SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Microsoft Corp President and Chief Legal Officer Brad Smith said on Friday that technology companies are most likely to change how they moderate online platforms in response to brand-new laws from foreign federal governments, despite whether U.S. lawmakers act to alter a U.S. law that has actually enabled social media platforms to thrive.
Smith said that Section 230 of the U.S. Communications Decency Act, which says that tech companies can not be demanded what users of their online platforms state, was a needed law in the late 1990s when it initially passed but that technology companies are now more mature and must have a “brand-new level of obligation” for what is stated on their websites.
He also said that other countries such as New Zealand were passing laws in the wake of occasions like the mass murder in Christchurch earlier this year, which was relayed live on social networks platforms.
“The laws around the globe are going to change, and due to the fact that technology is so worldwide, American companies will adopt a new technique even if the United States Congress does nothing,” Smith said, during an interview with Reuters Editor-in-Chief Stephen J. Adler in New York. Smith talked to Reuters as part of a trip to promote his just recently released book, “Tools and Defense.”
In the interview, Smith likewise said Microsoft has actually declined federal government requests for facial recognition software application in cases where it fears misuse and will never offer the innovation for monitoring.
“We will not sell facial recognition services for the purposes of mass security throughout the world,”
Microsoft has actually called for stronger guideline of facial recognition innovation, which has been used in China to track ethnic minorities. Smith stopped short for requiring a straight-out restriction on the technology, stating that Microsoft believes it has legitimate uses and has argued that governments need to move much faster to regulate it.
“It’s tough to innovate if you can’t use something, and it’s hard to learn if you can’t innovate,” Smith said.
Reporting by Stephen Nellis in San Francisco and Sheila Dang in New York, modifying by Louise Heavens and Steve Orlofsky
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