Feinstein to revive social media bill after terror attacks

Feinstein to revive social media bill after terror attacks
© Getty Images

The Senate Intelligence Committee's top Democrat could soon introduce legislation that would require social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, to alert federal officials about online terrorist activity, according to a spokesman on Monday.

Sen. Dianne FeinsteinDianne Emiel FeinsteinWhat's that you smell in the Supreme Court? New variant raises questions about air travel mandates Progressive groups urge Feinstein to back filibuster carve out for voting rights or resign MORE (D-Calif.) has been pushing for language that would address the growing use by extremist groups of social media to both spread propaganda and plot attacks around the world.

The bill could come as early as today, according to multiple sources.

ADVERTISEMENT

Feinstein recently tried to include the requirement as part of a Senate's Intelligence Authorization Act, but the provision was not included in the final bill amid intense pressure from tech companies and Sen. Ron WydenRonald (Ron) Lee WydenSenate parliamentarian looms over White House spending bill Democrats push tax credits to bolster clean energy Five reasons for concern about Democrats' drug price control plan MORE (D-Ore.), who blocked the language from moving to the floor.

These opponents have warned the mandate is "troublingly vague."

But the recent deadly assaults in Paris and San Bernardino, California, have given new life to the argument that Web companies should be doing more to help authorities identify potential terrorists.

Reuters reported Monday that several major Silicon Valley players, including Facebook, Google and Twitter, have already bolstered their efforts to scrub extremist online propaganda in response to ongoing pleas from federal officials.