Slate: Regulating Bots on Social Media Is Easier Said Than Done

Slate: Regulating Bots on Social Media Is Easier Said Than Done. “Both Congress and California are currently considering legislation that would require social media bots to disclose the fact that they’re automated. These bills are designed to respond to serious, well-founded concerns about the use of social media bots to spread misinformation and sow discord online, most infamously during the 2016 election season. It’s a well-intentioned idea, but the proposals face a common challenge in the regulation of new technology: defining the technology itself. While perhaps not the most exciting part of any legislation, the definitions section is critical—it tells us who will be subject to the requirements and prohibitions that follow. While both the federal and state bills have definitions sections, neither tells us precisely what they mean by ‘bot.'”

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