Tech giants to testify before Senate on mass shootings and extremism

Tech giants to testify before Senate on mass shootings and extremism
© Greg Nash

Executives from Facebook, Google and Twitter will testify before Congress next week at a hearing about mass violence and extremism.

The Senate Commerce Committee on Wednesday announced the witness list for the hearing, titled “Mass Violence, Extremism, and Digital Responsibility.”

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"In light of recent incidents of mass violence, this hearing will examine the proliferation of extremism online and explore the effectiveness of industry efforts to remove violent content from online platforms," the panel said in the announcement. "Witnesses will discuss how technology companies are working with law enforcement when violent or threatening content is identified and the processes for removal of such content."

The committee will hear from Facebook's head of global policy, Monika Bickert; Nick Pickles, the public policy director at Twitter; and Google's global director of information, Derek Slater.

The companies have been under increasing pressure to address extremist content and violent imagery on their platforms amid a recent surge in mass shootings.

All three declined a request for comment.

—This report was updated at 3:46 p.m.