European Official Urges US to Censor More, Claims It’s About ‘Freedom of Speech’

June 23rd, 2022 1:35 PM

Pro-censorship leftists are eager never to let a good crisis go to waste. And European elites are no exception.

A European official urged the U.S. to imitate new European legislation and ratchet up its online censorship.

European Commission Vice President for Values and Transparency Věra Jourová spoke at the recent EU-US Defense & Future Forum. She encouraged U.S. lawmakers to imitate the EU and censor more so-called “disinformation,” according to The Washington Post.

Amid Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, economic hardship and continuing complications from the COVID-19 pandemic, EU legislators are working to institute more draconian restrictions on the internet and social media through the Digital Services Act (DSA). 

Jourová framed the fight against so-called “disinformation” as a political issue, saying, “I see a very big role for the United States to address these digital risks to democracy,” according to The Post.

Jourová expressed her hope that the EU code would spur similar legislation in the U.S. “We want to share the lessons Europe learned from covid and from the Russian war and that are reflected in the code and I hope that it can serve as an inspiration,” The Post quoted her.

U.S. privacy legislation has stalled, The Post reported, partly because Democrats and Republicans disagree about the extent of free speech online. Congress has taken minimal, if any, action to consider bipartisan legislation to address online harms to children, including the February-introduced Kids Online Safety Act of 2022.

Jourová actually claimed that the pro-censorship EU code is about freedom of speech. “At the end of the day, we have to see that this is about the values, this is about the freedom of speech,” she reportedly told The Post’s Cristiano Lima. “This is about whether we will be able to defend democracy and democratic systems in the digital age.”

According to Financial Times, Jourová recently said that to combat “fake news,” authorities need to collect and aggregate more “country- and language-specific” user data from major tech and social media platforms. 

She claimed that “disinformation” is different from country to country, and that the new EU legislation will force platforms to provide “meaningful data.” The U.S. government previously criticized the DSA for neglecting nuances such as intellectual property.

The Open Internet Alliance, which was co-launched by pro-censorship Twitter, endorsed the EU’s DSA. The DSA’s data-sharing requirements have caused controversy. President Joe Biden’s expressed willingness to surrender U.S. government authority to the World Health Organization, indicates that his administration may entertain Jourová’s anti-free speech proposals.

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