Facebook, Google, Twitter to appear at a Senate panel hearing in September

Facebook, Twitter and Google will play a crucial role in shaping public opinion during US elections.

Executives from Facebook, Twitter and Google will soon testify before the Senate Intelligence Committee this year in September to face intense questioning by lawmakers regarding foreign interference on their own platforms.

The prime concern at the moment is the meddling in the upcoming US Elections in November 2018 by the Russians.

Senate Intelligence Committee chairman Richard Burr on 25 July told BuzzFeed News that he doesn't "know the exact date but it’s that first week.”

Also, according to the report by BuzzFeed News, Facebook, Twitter and Google will come to testify. Facebook's chief operating officer Sheryl Sandberg, and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey have confirmed that they will attend the hearing. However, there is no information from Google CEO Sundar Pichai.

Chief Operating Officer of Facebook, Sheryl Sandberg attends a meeting with the French President Emmanuel Macron (not pictured), during the

Chief Operating Officer of Facebook, Sheryl Sandberg. Image: Reuters

There are no comments from either of the companies on the situation.

The hearing which is scheduled for September will come after an initial hearing which should probably take place next week according to Burr.

This hearing comes in at a crucial time as the elections are around the corner and the tech giants feel a lot of pressure because of the role that their platforms play in shaping public opinion.

Facebook chief Mark Zuckerberg has already testified at a hearing in April at the Senate Commerce and Judiciary committees to answer questions regarding Cambridge Analytica.

As the elections approach, the tech companies are taking various safety measures. Officials at Facebook on 24 July said the company is using a range of techniques including artificial intelligence to counter Russian operatives or others who use deceptive tactics and false information to manipulate public opinion.

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