White House reiterates social media concerns; declines comment on Musk Twitter deal

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FILE PHOTO: A photo illustration shows Elon Musk's twitter account and the Twitter logo

WASHINGTON (Reuters) -The White House declined to comment on billionaire Elon Musk’s deal on Monday to buy Twitter Inc, but said that President Joe Biden has long been concerned about the power of social media platforms.

“Our concerns are not new,” said White House spokesperson Jen Psaki.

“The president has long talked about his concerns about the power of social media platforms, including Twitter and others, to spread misinformation.”

She said the White House would not comment on an individual transaction.

The White House continues to advocate for revoking Section 230, a law that shields online companies from liability over content posted by users, and supports ramping up anti-trust and transparency enforcement on technology companies, she said.

Biden administration officials think tougher scrutiny could prevent the spreading of false information on political issues and the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We engage regularly with all social media platforms about steps that can be taken,” Psaki added. “That has continued, and I’m sure will continue, but there are also reforms that we think Congress could take.”

(Reporting by Andrea Shalal and Trevor Hunnicutt; Editing by Leslie Adler, Bernard Orr and Aurora Ellis)

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