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Jan. 6 Committee Subpoenas Facebook, Twitter, Google and Reddit

Tech giants have failed to turn over information about plotting and coordination of insurrection on their platforms, committee alleges.
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Meta’s  (MVRS) - Get Meta Report Facebook, Alphabet’s  (GOOGL) - Get Alphabet Inc. Class A Report Google, Twitter  (TWTR) - Get Twitter, Inc. Report and Reddit have been subpoenaed by the the House Jan. 6 committee for records related to the organizing of the Jan. 6 insurrection.

Committee Chairman Bennie G. Thompson said the companies had failed to turn over documentation sought in connection with the fatal attacks by Trump supporters on Congress a year ago.

Supporters of former president Donald Trump attacked the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, seeking to halt Senate certification of President Joe Biden’s election victory. Five people died as a result of the attacks, and Trump was impeached for a second time by the House of Representatives. 

“Two key questions for the Select Committee are how the spread of misinformation and violent extremism contributed to the violent attack on our democracy, and what steps—if any—social media companies took to prevent their platforms from being breeding grounds for radicalizing people to violence,” Thompson said in a statement. It’s disappointing that after months of engagement, we still do not have the documents and information necessary to answer those basic questions.

Google, Meta and Reddit are cooperating

A spokesperson for Reddit said in an emailed statement that "we received the subpoena and will continue to work with the committee on their requests."

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Google and Facebook, known now as Meta, also said that they are cooperation with lawmakers. 

“We’ve been actively cooperating with the Select Committee since they started their investigation, responding substantively to their requests for documents, and are committed to working with Congress through this process", a spokesperson for Google wrote in an emailed statement. 

"Meta has produced documents to the committee on a schedule committee staff requested - and we will continue to do so", a spokesperson said.

Twitter declined to comment. 

Among information sought by the committee are records related to Facebook's decision to disband its Civic Integrity team immediately after the 2020 election; documents about Google's decision to allow a "grace period" for violations of its YouTube content moderation policy until Jan.20, 2021; and documents from Twitter explaining its decision to suspend Trump's account two days after the insurrection. 

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